Laser Cutting Wood

Back in 1963 a laser cutting wood was one of the latest innovations. The university of Michigan had developed a tool to cut through maple and other hardwoods.

At the time cutting wood with beams of light was thought to be almost science fiction, in fact it was described as similar to a disintegrating ray gun as described in many science fiction books.

The university's experimental wood cutting drill operated with a laser (light amplification by stimulated electron radiation) head that contains a coiled xenon flash tube and a ruby rod.

It builds up intensely hot light pulses, focuses them through a lens to vaporise a hole in a block of wood instantly, without leaving any char or burn marks.

It was thought that one day such laser cutting wood devices wood be readily available for the home DIYer to use in his or her home work shop.

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