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Laser drilling is one of the most advanced processes in laser material processing. Despite the high degree of industrialisation, there is still a high demand for research and further development of drilling processes, as ever greater requirements are needed in terms of the precision, quality or productivity of the holes to be achieved for industrial applications. In particular, the further development of industrially available laser beam sources with medium powers in the multi-kilowatt range or with pulse durations in the femtosecond range in ultra-short pulse lasers still enables new fields of research, the development of new drilling processes or the use of euer optical components.
The advantages of laser drilling lie in the wear-free processing of a wide variety of materials such as metals, ceramics, semiconductors, glasses, plastics or composite materials with high precision and with geometric freedom of the drill holes. Depending on the drilling process (see Fundamentals), very high aspect ratios (drilling depth/drilling diameter), high drilling rates or high reproducibility can be achieved with laser drilling. Laser drilling is therefore often an alternative to conventional drilling processes such as mechanical drilling, EDM, ECM, electron beam drilling or water jet drilling.