With the technology impacting all areas, the cutting industry is a beneficiary of advanced cutting systems. The newest cutting technology is waterjet cutting and utilizes a stream of water at high speed to make a cut by eroding a narrow line on the material. However, an abrasive can be added to cut a variety of materials such as steel, titanium, and foam among others.
The abrasive is usually added at the nozzle which makes it easier to switch between abrasive waterjet cutting and water only cutting. Due to such flexibility, there is so much versatility with waterjet machines. Because of the technology used in water jet cutting systems, it is now possible to cut different shapes accurately and faster. The good thing is that even inexperienced operators will make accurate cuts without trial and error.
Waterjet systems use a computer program to guide the cutting process. The high speed of thin water stream cuts the material faster. Since the stream of water is so small, only small material is wasted. This result is reduced cost for both the machine shop, as well as the customer. There are, however, other benefits of waterjet cutting that include the following.
1. A variety of materials can be cut.
When an abrasive is added in waterjet cutting, any material can be cut. For instance, it can be used to cut tool steels, stainless steel, carbon steels, copper, titanium, granite, ceramics, and wood among others. This better compared to some traditional cutting equipment that would only cut specific materials.
2. Heat damage is reduced.
There are no heat zones in waterjet cutting unlike other cutting methods such as laser and plasma that can cause heat damage. This makes it possible to cut materials of different types such as plastics and metals without warping, distorting, or melting them. This is possible because any heat is usually absorbed by water that returns to the tank. Temperatures will only go high when piercing a thick metal part. Everything else will remain at room temperature.
3. Cuts complex shapes.
It is one of the big advantage provided by waterjet cutting. Almost any shape can be cut. Through this method, you can pierce holes, cut sharp corners, bevels, and minimal inner radii. At the same time, cutting time is significantly reduced because stacking, tabbing, and nesting help to optimize the material.
Because there is no production of chips, hazardous gases, and grindings, waterjet cutting is considered clean. At the same time, cutting emulsions and oils will also not be required. When pure water is used, materials such as textiles, food products, and elastomers can be cut by a waterjet machine.