The nozzle is the most critical factor when looking for the optimal cut using a waterjet cutting system. A nozzle is designed to control the direction of the jet stream used to cut the substrate. The complete nozzle assembly is made up of 6 main components including:
1. High Pressure Water Inlet
This is where the initial, high-pressure stream of water comes from the intensifier and enters the nozzle.
2. Jewel (Orifice)
The orifice of the nozzle is where the water passes through to create a thin stream before mixing with the abrasive. The orifice is referred to as a jewel as it is typically made from ruby, sapphire, or diamond.
Garnet is abrasive minerals used to shape or finish a work piece by utilizing its roughness under high pressures.
4. Mixing Tube
The mixing tube can sometimes be referred to as the “nozzle” or “focusing tube” and is made up of extremely hard material. The water and abrasive are combined in the mixing tube before being released to cut. The ultimate goal is to create a consistent stream throughout the cutting process.
5. Nozzle Guard
The mixing tube is subject to wear from the cutting process so the nozzle guard serves to protect this component.
6. Cutting Jet Stream
The jet stream, used to cut the substrate, is produced after the abrasive and water have been mixed in the mixing tube.