Particles and gas that is released during laser applications are very harmful to both the operator and the laser system itself. The inhalation of these laser fumes can lead to long-term medical conditions and can also cause expensive medical claims for the employers. When using lasers for marking, etching, or cutting many factors come into play that determines the need for Laser Fume extractors set up.
Hazards that are associated with Laser Cutting:
- Hexavalent Chromium: Chromium is used in plating metals, and it is put into alloys for corrosion resistance. It is what makes stainless steel – stainless. The cutting of stainless steel produces hexavalent chromium, which is a dangerous form of chromium. Immediate exposure to hexavalent chromium can lead to skin sores and can also cause irritation to the eyes, nose, and throat. Furthermore, it is also known to cause cancer in those exposed to it.
- Nickel: Nickel is another common element that is found in alloys, also known as a carcinogen. It can cause some serious problems for the heart and kidney.
- Manganese: Manganese is another serious hazardous element. The worst effect is the brain and nervous system damage caused by manganese. Its exposure is most common in welders but can also occur with laser and plasma cutting, which can cause neurological damage. The damage is permanent incase of symptoms resembling Parkinson’s disease – tremors, difficulty in moving the arms and legs, and muscle stiffness.
- Beryllium: This is often used in aircraft parts and in other lightweight materials. Beryllium can cause a fatal lung disease called berylliosis.
- Lead: It is a well-known poisonous element. Cadmium and cobalt are also found in small amounts in many industries, can also cause cancer to the one in contact. It has been suggested to companies for phasing out the use of these two elements whenever possible.
- Other: Metal fume fever that is linked to zinc fumes, is also a common problem for anyone exposed. Symptoms will be similar to a flu virus: headaches, chills, muscle aches, and coughing. Candidates who are regularly exposed to metal smoke have more chances to get infections such as pneumonia and bronchitis. Already damaged lungs are easier for the germs to infect.
Controlling exposure will help prevent these above-mentioned conditions. Laser Fume extractors are being used by many companies to have a safer and efficient working environment. Contact the best Fume Filtration provider for your company and control the health hazards.