Engraving or marking

Personalisation: laser engraving and laser marking

Difference between laser engraving and laser marking

Objects can be identified or personalized by adding a text, logo or image. An engraving or marking can easily be applied by means of laser light. But where exactly does laser engraving differs from laser marking?

Laser engraving

Contrary to laser marking, a deeper marking is applied when using laser engraving. In fact, material is removed by evaporation. This creates deeper structures, relief, which are cleary distinguishable from the unprocessed surfaces.
Texts / images become visible and clearly readable.

Laser marking

During the process of laser marking, the surface is briefly exposed with a low-power laser beam. As a result the top layer of the surface warms up locally, causing an oxidation and consequently color change. It’s by changing the material properties that the desired marking (greyscale) is achieved.

 

Applications

Frequently used for:

  • Logo’s – images (branding)
  • QR-codes – barcodes
  • Texts and names
  • Serial numbers
  • Machinery instruction plates
  • Anti-counterfeiting
  • Decorative purposes
    • Applying structures to improve grip
    • Adding decorative shading to watches, glasses, jewelry, interior parts
Laser engraving barcodes and QR codes
Laser engraving watch plate: QR-code, name and product number.

 

Engraving/marking of 3D shapes

Rotation axes allow to engrave tubular and 3D shaped objects. In the example above, 3D printed titanium glasses are identified by applying a laser engraved name tag. Despite the curve in the shape of the specactle ears, it’s possible to apply an exact laser engraving.

 

Identification as final step of a production process

As industrial subcontractor Raytech manufactures high precision components by using laser technologies. Various laser techniques such as laser cutting, laser welding and 3D metal printing are used to produce parts and sub-assemblies. Finally, if required/desired, an identification can be made by means of laser engraving and laser marking.

Laser engraving and laser marking often offers a solution for the identification of mass productions where quality control and traceability plays a major role.