High pressure water jet cutting is quickly becoming the industrial cutting method of choice for the variety of advantages it offers over other cutting methods. Industries that rely on fine precision cutting or use heat sensitive materials are using water jet cutting as it can render the finest cuts on a wider range of materials.
Many professionals depend upon this cutting method, from miners and aerospace engineers to home renovators and contractors.
What is Water Jet Cutting?
Water jet cutting is when a stream of water is shot out of a nozzle at the high velocity of 40,000 to 55000 psi. The water accelerates though an orifice comprised of diamond, sapphire or ruby and will pass through a "mixing region. Water and an abrasive substance are combined here and the mixture is shot from the orifice combined with air pressure.
Water jet cutting is ideal for heat sensitive materials such as stainless steel, that will melt or warp under the thermal stress applied by other industrial cutting methods. In water jet cutting, it is the abrasive substance that is responsible for the actual cutting process. The abrasive substance is usually sand or garnet. Garnet is recommended, as it is non-toxic and can cut effectively with slight wear on the material.
Water jet cutting can be applied to a wide range of materials, meaning that a large number of industries depend upon this method. The following materials can be effectively cut using water jet cutting:
Aside from being able to cut a wide range of materials, water jet cutting offers several other advantages in industrial cutting:
High accuracy points of up to +/- 0.001. h.
Can cut thickness levels of 0.002” – 0.12”
Less material wasted as a water jet is capable of tight nesting
There is no heat-affected zone; material will not melt or distort
Stream is flexible
Contact force is low
The fine, flexible stream enables high pressure water jet cutting to render intricate and unique designs. Designs are generated by a computer and a robotic arm maneuvers the jet.
High pressure water jet cutting is used for jobs such as:
Net Size Cutting
High Precision Cutting
Water jet cutting can be applied to the above uses, as well as can create shapes out of tough materials such as marble or granite, making it widely used in the renovation industry.
As the world is becoming more conscious about its environmental footprint, industries are relying on water jet cutting as it is considered to be an environmentally sound method of industrial cutting. While some techniques use abrasives such as aluminum oxide that must be disposed of in a landfill after one use, water that is combined with non-toxic abrasives can be reused. In addition, no hazardous wastes result from water jet cutting.
Due to its many applications and its green-friendly qualities, more industries are becoming dependent upon high water jet cutting techniques.