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Waterjet Cutting Overview

Waterjet Cutting is a method of cutting materials using a jet of water. This can be done utilizing water only for soft/less dense materials such as foam or by adding an abrasive to the waterjet for cutting hard/dense materials such as tool steel. The water is forced through a precision orifice, or jewel, to create a well defined stream of water. This stream of water is typically produced under pressures of 40,000 to 60,000 PSI (pounds per square inch). For comparison, the water pressure in your house is about 60 PSI (pounds per square inch).

History of Waterjet Cutting

Water Jet Cutting was first used by Dr. Norman Franz in the 1950's. Dr. Franz was a forestry engineer who was looking for an easier way to cut lumber from large trees. Though Dr. Franz never created a production lumber cutting machine, his experiments helped Water Jet Cutting evolve into what it has become today.

Two decades later, Dr. Mohamed Hashish found a way to add abrasives to the waterjet stream. This opened the door to a whole new world of possiblities. With abrasives, a waterjet cutting machine can cut through virtually any material.


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