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News Link • Science, Medicine and Technology

TWI reveals handheld 5 kW laser torch

 It has now demonstrated a 5 kW fiber laser projector, configured rather like a rifle, that can be wielded by a single person.

Metal pipework forms a surprisingly large proportion of the total volume of contaminated material that must be removed and treated when a nuclear facility is decommissioned. Laser cutting offers benefits for cutting of contaminated tubing, in that the cutting rate can be quite fast, no reaction forces result from the cutting process, and very little spread of contaminated material occurs. However, past laser cutting systems have generally been unwieldy, cumbersome, and used cutting geometries not well suited to the nuclear jungle of densely interwoven stainless steel tubing.

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