The laser drilling process is an inexpensive alternative to mechanical drilling. The laser process is very adaptable for small holes with large depth to diameter ratios. Laser drilling provides a repeatable, accurate hole that can be customized for all types of manufacturing industries. To create holes with laser drilling, one of two processes is used: The first, known as Percussion Drilling, is performed by repeatedly pulsing the focused laser energy at a material surface, vaporizing layer by layer. For cylindrical parts like aerospace combustor liners, a separate process called DOF, Drilling On the Fly, is used, where percussion holes are drilled while the part is in motion.
Laser drilling provides consistency for industries having manufacturing specifications that require tight tolerance for high depth-to-diameter ratios. The process can provide dynamic changes of hole diameter, depth and edge quality. Shaped holes of almost unlimited geometry are now possible producing unique benefits previously unobtainable by conventional processing techniques.