At $721.6 million for 2000, shipments of industrial laser equipment and systems for North America and United States exports were up nearly 30% from 1999 levels, according to the Laser Systems Product Group (LSPG) of AMT — The Association for Manufacturing Technology. Industrial laser equipment and systems shipments within North America by the 46 companies reporting to the LSPG statistical program totaled $500.4 million while exports amounted to $221.2 million.
The LSPG report shows that 2000 was another strong year for high-power CO2 laser cutting systems. It also was a solid year for Nd:YAG lasers, with a nearly 60% increase compared with 1999. The report also shows cutting applications as the largest source of industrial laser activity in 2000, accounting for more than 50% of all shipments. Slightly more than 50% of all industrial lasers shipped for the year were of the CO2 variety, and more than 80% of total shipments were configured as a laser system (laser source plus workstation).