How hot do plasma cutters get?

Thinking about investing in a plasma cutting machine but wondering how hot can they actually get?

As one of the most effective ways to cut metal using heat, a plasma torch needs to be reaching a very high temperature in order to do its job properly.

Whether you are concerned about safety or you want to ensure that the heat of a plasma cutter is sufficient for the task at hand, read on to discover everything you need to know about how hot plasma cutting machines get.

How does plasma get hot?

For those that don’t know, plasma is the fourth state of matter and is created when a gas is heated to a high temperature and controlled in such a way as to strip atoms of their electrons.

When it comes specifically to plasma cutting machines, a particular gas, or a mix of gases, is pushed down a narrow nozzle at great speed, which creates friction and makes the gas so hot that it transforms into plasma.

How hot can plasma get?

If you are wondering just how hot can a plasma torch get, then you may be shocked to hear that plasma can get as hot as 45,000 degrees Fahrenheit or 25,000 degrees Celsius. To put this into perspective, the surface of the sun is around 9,940 degrees Fahrenheit or 5,505 degrees Celsius, although it can reach temperatures of up to 45,000 degrees Fahrenheit, roughly the same temperature as a plasma cutter.

Furthermore, as well as reaching temperatures hotter than the sun, the flame on a plasma torch is so bright that you should never look directly at it as this could cause permanent eye damage.

How does a plasma cutter work?

Plasma cutters use a gas, such as nitrogen or oxygen, to create a plasma arc that has the ability to melt and cut through metals such as stainless steel, mild steel, and aluminium.

Each plasma cutter features a nozzle that allows you to control the shape and size of the plasma arc. The amount of heat applied to the material will affect how quickly it will melt or cut. You can adjust this heat by altering the speed of the cutter or by moving closer or further away from the workpiece.

How to use a plasma cutter safely?

Given the above information, you may be concerned that a CNC plasma cutter is too dangerous to use in your work area. Fortunately, this is not the case, as long as you take the necessary safety precautions.

  • Shield your eyes from the bright plasma arc flame with darkened safety glasses or goggles.
  • Wear flame and heat-resistant clothing to protect yourself from sparks.
  • Do not operate a plasma cutting machine with matches or a lighter in your pockets, as this may explode or catch fire.
  • Use the recommended temperature for the material you are cutting.
  • Use a coolant to ensure that the plasma torch nozzle and electrode don’t melt or catch fire.

Do you need more information on how to use a plasma cutting machine safely and effectively? Contact us here and let us help you find the right plasma cutter for your cutting needs.

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