In the typical laser cutting process, an “assist gas” (usually nitrogen or oxygen) is blown along the material to remove any excess molten metal from the edge. Both of these gases have their advantages and disadvantages.
Nitrogen is generally used when cutting stainless or aluminum in order to achieve excellent quality. It serves as a shielding gas in light gauge material to stop the burning process and allow the laser to vaporize the material. This means that power is the determining factor; more power equals more speed.
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