Micro-Cutting Stents Using Fiber Lasers

Press Release


December 15, 2011

Micro-cutting stents is one of the most demanding manufacturing applications in the medical device industry. With tube diameters between 1mm and 10mm and a wall thickness of around 100µm, precision cutting is essential. It is also critical that the cut metal does not have rough edges as the stents are permanently inserted into arteries.

At this year’s BIOMEDevice exhibition, held in San Jose, California, 6 - 7 December, visitors to JK Lasers’ booth discovered how medium power range, single mode fiber lasers can micro-cut medical instruments to produce small kerf widths (20 to 30µm).

Featuring high beam quality and excellent power stability, they deliver dross-free cuts with very high contour accuracy (<5µm). As a result, the amount of post-processing required to achieve a high quality finish is vastly reduced.

Delivering highly concentrated, controlled amounts of heat, the resulting heat affected zone (HAZ) is small. Typical cutting speeds for medical stents with a single mode laser output are around 1m per minute.

Dr Mark Richmond, Product Manager for JK Lasers, said: “We are finding that medical device manufacturers are under pressure to improve productivity. Precise and highly controlled processing can be achieved using the JK Fiber Laser range, enabling manufacturers to weld and cut quickly without compromising quality. Our lasers also substantially reduce - if not eliminate - the need for further processing to finish parts. This leads to an overall increase in throughput.”

Also on display at BIOMEDevice was JK Lasers’ recently launched 1kW fiber laser (JK1000FL). This high powered addition to the JK Lasers’ range is particularly well-suited for welding hermetic seals on medical devices and for cutting larger surgical tools, such as bone saws.

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