Yes, laser engraving and laser marking metal is possible. Trotec laser machines can engrave and mark different types of metal. A laser engraver enables metal marking through different methods: Annealing marking, engraving and removing. Below you can find an explanation of the processes. To achieve these finishes you need to have a laser machine with a fiber laser source. Many Trotec lasers, including laser etching machines, can can process metals.
You can find more information about different laser types here.
Laser marking metal method 1: Annealing
To anneal metal you work with a defocused laser beam, in order to introduce only low heat into the material. This heat output leads to local change in the structure of a metal. Recolouring results in this manner. The surface is not damaged but it remains smooth and clean. Depending on the temperature, deep black or also a different colour can be generated. However, the marking disappears again when the metal is heated to about 200°C.
Laser marking metal method 2: Laser engraving metal
During laser engraving, more energy is used than when annealing. This leads to vaporisation of the material and to local depressions in the surface. These inscriptions have a long life and are extremely abrasion resistant.
Laser marking metal method 3: Removing
In the case of coated metals (Such as anodised aluminium), the top layer is removed by laser processing. This process can be carried out at high speeds. With a suitable choice of the top layer, high contrast markings are achieved with this method.
Bare metals can be marked with a CO2 laser only with laser marking solutions. The metal marking solutions are applied to the workpiece and are burnt into the material during the laser processing. After the laser process, the remainder of the marking paste must be washed off. This way, you can also achieve high contrasts on metals with weak absorption with a CO2 laser. The laser marking metal solutions are available as a paste, spray or tape.