HISTORY of water jet cutting
The actual start of the use of high pressure water jets took place in the 1930s in the USA and the Soviet Union. American and Russian engineers succeeded in compressing water at several hundred bar. The released water jet on the nozzle tube was used in tunnelling and mining. During this period, the preferred application was mining coal and stone.
In the 1950s, Russian engineers succeeded in building pressure generators with more than 2,000 bar. With these, they were able to cut hard materials such as stone. These improved pressure generators had no competitors as the American engineers could not develop a high pressure system with the pressure intensifier principle until 10 years later.
The water jet was used as a cutting tool in the 1950s at the University of Michigan. Various methods for cutting wood were tested here.
Cutting tests on technical materials were carried out from 1961.
The first, commercial high pressure water jet cutting systems were not installed until the beginning of the 1970s. The breakthrough for this technology did not come until 1975/76 with the cutting of building material, plastic and corrugated cardboard in industrial production.
The next large step in this technology was at the beginning of the 1980s. Here, abrasives (abrasive media) were mixed with the high pressure water jet to increase the cutting performance. The high pressure pumps, further developed at the same time with a pressure up to 6,000 bar today, brought a large growth to this technology. Now it was possible to cut hard / thick materials such as metals and others.