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Plasma cutting is a method developed in the 1950s for cutting of metals that could not be cut by oxyfuel cutting. Such materials include stainless steel, aluminum and copper.
Subsequently the method has also been used for cutting and precision-cutting of mild and low-alloyed steel.
Plasma is a state of matter where the gas that is ionized, which means that it consists of positive ions and electrons causing the media to be electrically conductive. Plasma is very energy-rich. Plasma melts the material locally and the melted material is removed from the cut by means of the gas jet.
Plasma cutting is a melt-cutting method, where the energy of the hot plasma arc is used for blowing away molten material. Plasma cutting is carried out by using gases adapted to the specific application. For example, mild steel is often cut with oxygen or nitrogen as plasma gas while stainless steel is often cut with an argon (or nitrogen) based gas including hydrogen as a reducing media.
Avoid risks by following the safety instructions for hot work.