How Do Plasma Cutters Actually Work?
With the advent of the unique properties of plasma, it makes it possible for plasma cutter to pass through the ferrous of all materials like metals and steels.
Before we proceed on discussing how plasma cutter works, lets us first define plasma, the one responsible for letting plasma cutter pass through thick materials, Plasma, defined by wikipedia, is one of the four fundamental states of matter (other being the solid, liquid and gas) and is also known as an ionized gas which consists of positive ions and free electrons in proportions that results in more or less no overall electric charge, typically at low pressures (can be observed in the upper atmosphere and with fluorescent lamps) or at very high temperatures (like the stars and nuclear fusion reactors). Before, many schools teach about the state of matter having only three which are the solid, liquid and gas but the truth is that, there really is four of them and the fourth one being the plasma. To simply put, a plasma is an ionized gas that provides sufficient amount of energy to free electrons coming from the atoms or the molecules plus, it is also the one responsible for letting both the ions and electrons to coexist. By boosting a gas to an extremely high temperature will definitely result from the creation of plasma. By doing so, the energy will start to break apart the gas molecules and the atoms will begin to split as wel;. With this, the fast moving electrons will also collide with the other electrons and ions which will lead to the release of an enormous amount of energy. The amazing cutting power of plasma is caused by the enormous amount of energy being released by the collision of electrons and ions.
Speaking of how a plasma cutter works, it actually works by sending a pressurized gas or an electric arc through a small channel or a constricted opening which is the cutting nozzle. If you are to look closely at its center, there you can find an electrode that is negatively charged. Once you apply any power to the negatively charged electrode, and you touched the tip of the nozzle to a positively charged metal, what will happen is that a connection will be made and it creates a circuit and a very powerful spark as well. Plasma will be produced once the has that has been passing through the channel will be heated by the spark until it reach its fourth state form, so to speak. Once the temperature of plasma reached an amazing level of thirty thousand degree Fahrenheit, it became capable of cutting through almost anything, even metals and steels.
There is also another of making plasma cutter works and that is by creating a high velocity of plasma flow between the electrode that is negatively charged and the electrode that is positively charged.