Overcomes challenges of starting a business during the current world crisis.
Starting a business is difficult at the best of times but, starting one during the pandemic crisis that the world is currently in, is very brave. “We are delighted that we have successfully negotiated our first year in business and can reflect back on the year knowing that we have completed some very interesting installations and look forward to more in 2022 with the current order book that we have,” commented Chris van Aswegen of African Lazer Solutions.
African Lazer Solutions was established in November 2020, when the company was appointed as the sole agent to represent Penta Laser in South Africa.
African Lazer Solutions were appointed agents for Penta Laser in November 2020. The company has won an order to install a Penta Laser Bolt 30kW fibre laser early in 2022
Penta Laser was a joint venture between the Italian El.En. Group, based in Firenze, Italy and the Chutian Laser Group, based in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. Penta Laser is based in the Wenzhou Economic Development Zone, Zhejiang Province, China. Ties between the two companies go back to 2007 when the first joint venture was announced. However, the Penta Laser Equipment company was only established in 2013. In 2019 the El.En. Group strengthened its presence in China in the laser cutting systems business by acquiring the minority shareholders for cash and subsequently became the 100 per cent owner. That same year the company opened a third production centre, this time in Linyi, Shangdong Province and also introduced its first 20kW fibre laser cutting machine, which is also claimed to be the first 20kW machine developed in China.
El.En. SpA is primarily engaged in the production of laser systems. It controls a group of companies active in the manufacture, research, development, distribution and sale of laser equipment. The company’s range of products includes laser systems for dermatology, surgery, cosmetics, physiotherapy, dentistry and gynaecology, laser systems for cutting, marking and welding of metals, wood, plastic and glass, decoration of leather and fabrics and cleaning laser systems for the conservation of the cultural heritage such as conservative restoration of works of art. The company also offers accessories, after-sale services and consulting in the related areas.
Penta Laser has built service and training centres in 35 major Chinese cities and in more than 10 countries around the world.
Penta Laser’s product base of fibre laser cutting machines includes the medium power Awing (1kW to 6kW)
Penta Laser’s product base of fibre laser cutting machines includes the medium power Awing (1kW to 6kW), the Bolt (2kW to 30kW), the cost-effective Swing (6kW to 12kW), the Classic Fibre Plus (2kW to 20kW), 3D laser cutting, laser tube cutting machines, pipe cutting, auto-loading and unloading systems, pipe cutting auto-loading, 2D machine auto-loading, laser welding systems, the Swan hand-held fibre laser welding, circular parts welding with compact CJ and the large format Bull with a cutting table up to 30 metres in length.
With its holding company based in Italy, Penta Laser has access to key leading European componentry such as the IPG laser power source.
Portable fibre laser welding systems
“Known for many years for its fast cutting ability, fibre laser technology has been making progress in welding applications too. Remember how for many decades, the market for industrial lasers was dominated by the CO2 variety until fibre came along. Traditionally MIG and TIG welding have been universally used in many industries when joining metals. This is now changing.”
Ultrafab have recently invested in three Penta Swan hand-held fibre lasers for welding applications
“The features that fibre laser welding include are high-quality welding of thick, thin and reflective metals without distortion, deformation, undercut or burn-through, welding of dissimilar metal parts of different thicknesses, dramatically low-heat input and minimised heat affected zone and minimal part setup and post-processing grinding or polishing.”
“Additionally, unlike traditional methods, welding fixtures are simpler or not needed, metals do not need to be pre-brushed or ground completely clean and even novices can reliably weld materials with dissimilar thicknesses and high/low electrical conductivity.”
“Penta’s Swan hand-held fibre laser welding machine has been increasing its market share here in South Africa. A lovely example is our relationship with Ultrafab, the manufacturers of the Ultralock security lock.”
“They require a large amount of aluminium welding to be done on some of their products. Aluminium is a versatile metal with remarkable attributes. Its low atomic mass, high corrosion resistance, and excellent thermal and electrical conductivity make it a very unique material. It is easily machined, cast, drawn, bent and extruded, all appealing traits for manufacturers. Plus, there is plenty of it. Next to oxygen and silicon, aluminium is the third most abundant element in the world and the most abundant metal, comprising more than 8 per cent of the earth’s crust.”
“At first they tested one of Penta’s portable fibre laser welding machines. The favourable results have convinced them to purchase a further two machines and one has been set up for automation with a cobot (collaborative robots that are intended for direct human robot interaction within a shared space) robot operating the system that recognises a pre-programmed QR code.”
30kW laser order
“The emergence of high-powered fibre lasers is forcing fabricators to think differently about how they approach laser cutting. The increasing adoption rate of high-powered lasers is not likely to end anytime soon. With laser cutting power reaching 20kW and more, these devices are capable of cutting materials up to 38mm with precision, a thickness once reserved for waterjets and plasma cutting machines.”
The Penta Swan hand-held fibre laser welding machine performs very well with aluminium, carbon steel and stainless steel welding
“Adopting these high-powered devices comes with new considerations, however. All metal fabricators love the increased cutting capacity. For example, on average, a new 20kW fibre laser can increase cutting speeds by up to 50% when compared to a 10kW fibre laser power source.”
“We have secured an order for a 30kW fibre laser that arrives in the first half of 2022. We will be assisting the client to take full advantage of the features that the Penta 30kW fibre laser offers.”
“I have been in the laser cutting industry for more than 25 years and all of those years I have been working in the technical environment, including installation, with the two major European laser manufacturers as the primary source of equipment. Invaluable experience that is very hard to come by.”
“It is an exciting period for African Lazer Solutions, myself and of course Penta Lasers,” concluded van Aswegan.