Our company was essentially founded to exploit the gap in the market for high-end laser stripping systems for medical device manufacture. Whilst laser strippers had been available in the market for over 20 years and were well established for consumer electronics cabling and some other niche applications, there was nothing suitable for the latest medical devices. This is because the application required extreme precision and techniques not readily available on the general market.
The intention of Laser Wire Solutions’ founder and CEO, Paul Taylor, was to design and manufacture bespoke machines that could be used to strip hair-fine wires in data, aerospace and medical applications, which were developing a range of technologically advanced products, such as mobile phones, microwave assemblies, pacemaker coils, medical electrodes and other medical devices (e.g. miniaturized catheters and cardiac monitors).
Prior to the launch of our Odyssey system, medical device manufacturers either had to resort to mechanical scraping or hot caustic chemical stripping to dissolve wire insulations. These methods were proving unreliable, inconsistent and inaccurate. Failures in the manufacturing process were leading to expensive scrap and failures in use were an altogether more serious matter. In the case of chemical stripping this also posed safety risks because of the use of hot chemical baths.
For the majority of medical devices, manufacturers simply struggled on with existing techniques or, in some cases, as there was no turnkey solution, resorted to developing their own, very expensive in-house systems. These typically use gas-based UV laser technology which, aside from costing hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars to develop, take up a lot of space and require significant maintenance. This has limited the use of lasers to niche applications or has even meant that some innovative medical device concepts could not be developed.
With the introduction of compact, reliable, maintenance-free, solid-state UV laser technology over the last decade, Paul and his team identified an opportunity to devise an affordable, compact laser system which can be used off-the-shelf by medical device manufacturers. The machines that we now create remove the micron-thin insulation in a non-damaging way and built-in vision cameras with artificial intelligence verify the quality of each and every strip. Our Odyssey-4 product page will give you more specific information on this system.
Our business is very much an applications-based business. We work closely and in partnership with companies to solve quality and production issues in processing wires and cables, which in turn leads to the development of technologically more advanced and commercially sound products. In the medical sector these products save lives and in the automotive sector these end products reduce our carbon footprint.