What Is A CO2 Laser?

Are you curious about a CO2 laser, but don’t know where to find information about them? Perhaps you have heard others talking about a CO2 laser but don’t know what they are? Whatever your reason might be, we have the answer for you!

What Is A CO2 Laser

We know how tricky it can be to navigate the world of CO2 lasers. It can be challenging to find the information that you need, and even something as simple as figuring out what it is can leave you confused and overwhelmed.

Well, no more! This article will tell you everything you need to know about CO2 lasers and what they are used for. Just keep reading to find out more.

What Is A CO2 Laser?

A CO2 laser emits a beam of coherent light with a very high energy density. This makes it useful for cutting materials such as metals, plastics, glass, wood, ceramics, stone, etc.

It can also be used for welding or soldering. The wavelength of the emitted radiation depends on the pressure and temperature of the CO2 gas.

The CO2 laser was invented in 1960 by Theodore Maiman. This type of laser uses carbon dioxide gas (CO2) as its medium.

Carbon dioxide lasers emit light at wavelengths between 10.6 micrometers and 11.3 micrometers. These wavelengths are invisible to humans, but they are visible to some animals such as bees.

At higher pressures, the wavelength increases, while lower pressures result in shorter wavelengths. The most common wavelength is 10.6 micrometers.

How Does A CO2 Laser Work?

There are two main ways in which a CO2 laser works: direct absorption and indirect absorption. In direct absorption, the laser beam hits the surface of the material being cut and causes it to heat up.

When the material reaches a certain temperature, it starts to glow red hot.

This glowing process is called ablation. In indirect absorption, the laser beam passes through a transparent window and heats the air inside the chamber.

As the air gets heated, it expands and pushes against the back wall of the chamber.

This creates a vacuum, which sucks the surrounding air into the chamber. Once the chamber is full of air, the air molecules absorb the laser’s photons and get excited.

This excitation causes them to release their excess kinetic energy as infrared light. This light then travels out of the chamber and hits the object being cut.

What Are CO2 Lasers Used For?

CO2 lasers are used by professionals all across the globe. Some of these professionals include dentists, doctors, engineers, architects, carpenters, mechanics, painters, welders, and even jewelers.

They use CO2 lasers to make cuts on metals, wood, plastics, glass, ceramics, stone, concrete, fiberglass, leather, and even marble. The list goes on and on!

What Is A CO2 Laser Pointer?

A CO2 laser pointer is a device that allows you to point a CO2 laser with ease. They usually consist of housing where the CO2 laser is located, an optical system, and a power supply.

This means that you do not need any additional equipment to use this laser. You only need to connect the laser to the power supply and aim it at your desired target.

How Do You Know A CO2 Laser Is The One For You?

You could also use a CO2 laser to melt metal, plastic, glass, ceramic, and any other type of material that you want to cut.

However, this is not always possible. For example, you cannot use a CO2 laser on paper, cardboard, foam, cloth, rubber, wax, paint, or any other type of non-metal material.

If you need to cut something made from one of those materials, you would need to use another type of cutting tools such as an electric saw, jigsaw, or band saw.

Are CO2 Lasers Safe?

Yes, a CO2 laser is very safe. It emits only visible light, which means that it does not emit any harmful radiation. Even though it produces visible light, it still has enough power to cut through most types of materials.

Why Are CO2 Lasers So Popular?

A lot of people like CO2 lasers because they are extremely useful. They are great for making cuts in almost every type of material. They are also very versatile, small, and lightweight.

This makes them ideal for carrying around. They are also very reliable. They are so dependable that they are often referred to as “the Swiss army knife of tools.”

Why Should I Use A CO2 Laser Instead Of Other Types Of Lasers?

There are many reasons why people choose to buy a CO2 laser over other types of lasers. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of them now to help you decide if it is the right laser for you or not!

Advantages Of CO2 Lasers

  • They are much easier to operate than other types of lasers.
  • They are much cheaper than other types of lasers because they require less maintenance and repair. 
  • They produce a more powerful beam than other types of lasers, so they can cut thicker objects.
  • They have a longer lifespan than other types of lasers; they will last for years without needing repairs.
  • They are safer than other types of lasers since there is no risk of explosion or fire.
  • They are smaller than other types of lasers and therefore easier to carry around.
  • They are easy to store since they take up little space.
  • They are portable and versatile.
  • They are durable and accurate.
  • They are powerful and fast.

Disadvantages Of CO2 Lasers

  • The biggest disadvantage of using a CO2 laser is that it requires high amounts of electricity.
  • It takes a lot of time to cool down after cutting something.
  • You cannot use a CO2 laser if the ambient temperature is below 0 degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit).
  • You cannot use a CO2 Laser on metals like aluminum, stainless steel, brass, copper, etc.
  • CO2 lasers are very expensive compared to other types of lasers. 
  • CO2 lasers are also difficult to find in stores.
  • CO2 lasers cannot be used indoors.
  • CO2 lasers must be operated by professionals.


CO2 lasers are a great way to cut through almost anything. However, they are not suitable for everything. If you need to cut through certain types of materials, you should consider using a different type of cutter.

Michael Moore

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