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The Impact of Laser Processing Technology on the Medical Device Industry

What To Know

  • It allows for creating high-quality, durable marks on the surface of a part that can be used to identify the part or indicate quality or safety specifications.
  • Based on a study published in the One Petro publication, laser marking does not affect corrosion resistance except when the material is stainless steel.

Lasers are revolutionizing the medical device industry. Laser processing has opened up a new range of possibilities for manufacturers and users alike, leading to an increased demand for this technology. According to data from Markets and Markets, global laser technology is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.9% from 2022 to 2027 and reach $25.6 billion by the end of the forecast period.

This article will explore how laser processing changes what people think about manufacturing. It will also discuss how laser manufacturers are helping with precision medical device manufacturing.

Laser Processing Technology

Laser processing technology has a wide range of applications. It can be used for cutting, welding, and marking materials such as metals, plastics, and composites. These processes are carried out by directing high-energy laser beam components onto the material at speeds up to 10 km/s.

The laser beam’s highly focused nature and ability to heat specific areas allow it to cut through materials with minimal damage. This can have many applications in medical laser processing.

Laser welding involves joining two pieces of metal together by heating them until they become molten enough for fusion. This process is much faster than conventional methods like brazing or soldering, which require heating both surfaces evenly before fusing them. There are many such applications of laser processing, which we will explore in the following sections.

Applications of Laser Processing

Laser processing is used in many industries, including the medical device industry. It can be used to make parts for medical devices and other products.

Here are a few ways to use laser processing in medical device manufacturing:

Laser Marking

Laser marking is a popular application for laser processing technology. It allows for creating high-quality, durable marks on the surface of a part that can be used to identify the part or indicate quality or safety specifications.

For example, suppose you’re making medical devices and want to ensure they meet FDA standards. In that case, you might want to include some kind of mark indicating this fact on your product packaging.

You could also use laser marking and coding technology as part of an assembly line process. Putting different serial numbers on each finished product makes it easier for workers in charge of shipping out said products because they won’t have to manually look up every number individually before sending them.

Laser marking does not impact the corrosion resistance of medical devices. When manufactured using metals, medical devices are at risk of being corroded. This can further impact the patient’s health who is using the device. Hence, corrosion resistance becomes vital.

While many believe that laser marking can reduce corrosion resistance, that’s not the case. Based on a study published in the One Petro publication, laser marking does not affect corrosion resistance except when the material is stainless steel. The study shows that laser marking on stainless steel can make the product less resistant. However, all other materials show no effect of laser marking.

Due to the many benefits it offers, the laser marking industry is witnessing exponential growth. Data Bridge Market Research’s market analysis shows that the laser marking sector will grow at a CAGR of 6.8% from 2021 to 2028.

Laser Welding for Micro-Joining of Intricate Parts

Laser welding is an excellent method for joining intricate parts, such as the tiny components in medical devices. Laser welding allows you to weld dissimilar materials and even small parts without melting them. It’s fast, clean, and cost-effective compared with other methods of joining metal parts.

  • Fast: A laser beam can travel up to 100 miles per second (160 km/s). This means you can fuse two pieces within milliseconds, a fraction of the time required by traditional methods such as soldering or brazing.
  • Clean: Unlike other joining processes that create toxic fumes during their operation, laser welding produces no harmful gases or particulates.
  • Cost-effective: Since no consumables like fluxes are required for this process, only electricity is needed for its execution.

Laser welding has become a standard application across the medical device manufacturing industry. This is because medical devices must be kept clean to ensure no adverse effects on the user. The current market size of laser welding was valued at $2,758.3 million in 2022.

Laser Cutting for Implantable Devices

Implantable devices are parts placed inside the human body for medical purposes. For example, pacemakers, stents, catheters, hip replacements, and dental implants all fall into this category.

These devices must be durable enough to last inside the body for years without being damaged by bodily fluids or tissue growth around them. And yet they must also be able to withstand being removed from patients when they need replacements or repairs over time and sterilized before each use, so they don’t introduce bacteria into another person’s bloodstream.

The laser beam-cutting process helps cut medical devices precisely. This reduces potential damage to implantables in the long run, encouraging users to trust the devices and use them for a better lifestyle.

Laser Micromachining for Surface Structuring

Laser micromachining is the process of creating small features on a surface by removing material through the use of a laser beam. It can be used in many ways, including surface structuring and microelectronics.

Laser micromachining has been around since the 1970s. Still, it wasn’t until recently that it became more widely available due to advancements in technology and materials that made it possible for this tool to be used more efficiently than ever before.

Today, medical device and microelectronics manufacturers use laser micromachining as a solution because they require high-quality parts with complex geometries that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to manufacture using traditional methods.

According to an article published on the NCBI website, laser surface structuring can help create a wide range of surface textures. The difference can range in size, geometrics, area ratios, and orientation of the tools.

Conclusion

Laser processing technology has made a huge impact on the medical device industry. The ability to mark, cut, weld, and micromachine delicate parts mean that medical devices can be produced with greater precision than ever before.

Suppose you are a medical device manufacturer or a pharmacy owner. In that case, you can collaborate with a laser processing service provider to manufacture custom components that can enhance the patient experience and help your company succeed.

Medical Device News Magazinehttps://infomeddnews.com
Medical Device News Magazine provides breaking medical device / biotechnology news. Our subscribers include medical specialists, device industry executives, investors, and other allied health professionals, as well as patients who are interested in researching various medical devices. We hope you find value in our easy-to-read publication and its overall objectives! Medical Device News Magazine is a division of PTM Healthcare Marketing, Inc. Pauline T. Mayer is the managing editor.

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