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Femtosecond Laser Processing Enhances Medical Device Applications

PLYMOUTH, Minn., Feb. 4, 2014 — LSA Laser now offers femtosecond laser processing capabilities for medical device manufacturing. This will prove particularly useful in micromachining applications for drilling and cutting high-precision holes and shapes without causing thermal damage.

“This capability creates new opportunities for advanced micro designs, particularly for difficult-to-process metals that are not feasible with conventional lasers and for composite materials,” said Tom Noll, president of LSA.

LSA Laser's femtosecond laser processing capabilities for medical device manufacturing. Courtesy LSA Laser.

The new laser processing has potential for cutting multiple materials at once, or drilling and cutting micro shapes, which reduces operations in the manufacturing of medical assemblies such as catheters. The ultrafast laser allows LSA to process a wide range of materials and composites, including polymers, platinum, stainless steel and nitinol.

The system was designed to be flexible and suitable for on- or off-axis cutting, as well as for R&D or volume applications. It can handle both flat stock and tube cutting on the same system with minimal setup.

The shortened pulse from a femtosecond laser decreases the heat-affected zone around the material being cut, resulting in less damage to the surrounding areas and an overall cleaner cut, Noll said. Parts processed with this system require little to no postprocessing.

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