Steel: Plasma Cutting Vs Oxyfuel Cutting

When it comes to cutting steel, Oxyfuel cutting has been the preferred technology but in recent year’s plasma cutting technology has grown and become a viable and a popular means of cutting in several industries and in many applications.

Below are 5 advantages that Plasma cutting can help businesses become more profitable due to cutting speeds that are faster, enhanced cut quality, greater productivity, lesser rework and improved versatility, all of which reduce costs significantly.

Cutting Speed:

Over 90% of the metal that is cut using plasma cutting is less than 25 mm thick. Plasma cutting is two times faster than oxyfuel cutting in that thickness range, and as the thickness decreases the plasma cutting speeds increase to almost 12 times quicker than oxyfuel cutting. The distinct speed advantage means you can cut more parts in lesser time.

The speed of Piercing:

For several kinds of applications, internal piercing is required, oxyfuel cutting can cut steel of 15mm thickness in 30 seconds as the metal requires pre-heating to around 1000°C. However, Plasma cutting takes less than 2 seconds to pierce metal of the same thickness.

Improved Cut Quality:

The quality of the cut using plasma is significantly superior to oxyfuel cutting. When using plasma cutting, you are not faced with the problem of plate warping which is an issue when using oxyfuel cutting. Modern plasma cutting systems can be controlled easily and are quite easy to handle. They also allow excellent visibility of the part that you are cutting.

Versatility: 

Many operations require cutting of a lot of different kinds of materials. As plasma cutting is a process that uses the electric arc for cutting, it is easier to cut electrically conductive metals such as mild steel, copper, aluminum, stainless steel, etc. Furthermore, plasma cutting can be used to cut a stack of plates. All these things are not possible using oxyfuel cutting. Hence, plasma cutting is extremely versatile.

Safety: 

Oxyfuel cutting is associated with many hazards due to the use of pressurized flammable gas and open flame. Plasma cutting does not require flammable gas nor flame for the process of cutting. During plasma cutting, the heat that is produced is also more concentrated, reducing the dangers associated with hot metals that are produced while cutting.