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StarCut Tube Femto

Photonics.com
Apr 2010
Rofin-Baasel LasertechRequest Info
 
STARNBERG, Germany, April 20, 2010 — Rofin Baasel Lasertech’s stent cutting system with a femtosecond laser, the StarCut Tube Femto offers cold laser cutting for medical device manufacturing.

Femtosecond lasers process materials faster than energy can diffuse within the atomic lattice; therefore no heat is transferred to the surrounding material, eliminating recast, distortion and burr. The device integrates a compact laser source with field-proven and long-term stability, properties that are essential for industrial manufacturing.

Manufacturing of medical devices from tube stock typically relies on laser fusion cutting with pulse widths on the microsecond scale. Even with an optimum setup, this cutting process is not free from burrs and recast inside the tube. Thus postprocessing usually includes steps like broaching, chemical etching for removing oxide layers and electrochemical polishing for edge rounding. The nitinol material (memory shape alloy) is prone to chemical and mechanical damage during postprocessing. With femtosecond lasers, postprocessing is reduced to a simple ultrasound cleaning, improving efficiency.

Bioabsorbable stents are at the heart of numerous research and development activities, but bioabsorbable polymers like polylactic acid and polyglycolic acid suffer from low melting points, making them difficult to machine with traditional cutting lasers, and the large heat affected zone causes heavy microstructural changes. In contrast, femtosecond lasers have achieved good results with vascular stents, producing high-precision edge quality.

The StarCut Tube Femto mechanics were adapted to the specific requirements for handling thin-walled, mechanically fragile semi-finished products.

For more information, visit: www.rofin.de


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GLOSSARY
femtosecond laser
A type of ultrafast laser that creates a minimal amount of heat-affected zones by having a pulse duration below the picosecond level, making the technology ideal for micromachining, medical device fabrication, scientific research, eye surgery and bioimaging.
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