It seems like the laser machine can process all materials. Indeed, many materials can be processed by the laser machine. But there are exceptions as well. Some materials will damage the laser machine, other materials can be harmful to lethal to your health. The MSDS can clarify this, although the MSDS will not always give good insight as to whether the material can or should be processed with the laser. You may want to read our article regarding materials for more information t: Material

What does MSDS stand for?

MSDS stands for Material Safety Data Sheet, also known as a safety data sheet. If a manufacturer is going to sell a particular material, an MSDS must be available for request by the user of the material. In the MSDS, you can see what hazardous materials are in your material. You can also see the risks associated with using the material concerning safety, workers' health and the environment. By using an MSDS, you can take the necessary safety, environmental and health measures in the workplace.

So, you can request an MSDS from the supplier of your material. You can also search by "material name" + MSDS. However, it is best to simply request the MSDS from your supplier.

When you do start researching, you may not find anything. It is important to search for the technical name. Many materials are sold under a brand name, for example, Plexiglas or Perspex. If you look at the brand name, it may be PMMA for one individual and PA for another. So it is important to look beyond the brand name when searching for the MSDS.

A material can have multiple names.

  • Technical name: PMMA
  • Brand name: Plexiglass, Perspex
  • Common name: Acrylic

This is quite confusing, but the manufacturer will always be able to give you the technical name.

MSDS Blad1

If you received the MSDS the first thing you look at is the components to see if it contains anything harmful.

MSDS composition

It is important to check if the material contains the following components because they are a health hazard, lethal and cause damage to the machine:

  • Anions
  • Fluoride F-
  • Chloride Cl-
  • Bromide Br-
  • Iodide I-
  • Mercury Hg

Other components are not necessarily safe; you still must be aware of the fumes that are released when the material is processed. The safety hazard information is also in the MSDS.

Gas hazard symbol PLEASE NOTE!!! Anions and Chloride are very hazardous to one's health. BRM Lasers strongly recommends not to work with PVC or other materials containing Anions / Chloride with a laser machine. Processing these materials will terminate the warranty on your machine.

MSDS Dangers

Safety measures

You will also find first aid measures. Make sure everyone working near the machine is aware of these measures. The inhalation measures are particularly important because fumes are released when materials are processed in the machine.

MSDS First aid

Check the firefighting equipment and ensure you have the proper extinguishers within easy reach. At least a CO₂ extinguisher should be present with the laser machine. Also, check the machine's manual for fire precautions and comply with them.

Also, check the MSDS to see what measures apply when the substance is released and how to store it. You will also see what precautions to take regarding personal protection.

MSDS storage and safety

Last of all, you check toxicological information and instructions for disposal of the material.

MSDS Toxicology

Once you have determined your material does not contain hazardous substances and you take the proper precautions you can start working with your material.

If you are looking for the right parameters for your material, please check this page: How can I find the right parameters for my material?

If you still have questions about an MSDS or if you can't work it out, feel free to submit a ticket with your question. Be sure to include your MSDS so we have the correct information right away.

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