This study successfully applied multi-mode laser cutting with the variation of the laser cutting speed to cement mortar for the first time. The effects of the amount of silica sand in the cement mortar on laser cutting are tested and analyzed. The kerf width and penetration depth of the specimens after laser cutting are investigated. As the laser cutting speed increases, the penetration depth decreases for both cement paste and cement mortar, whereas the kerf width becomes saturated and increases, respectively, for cement paste and cement mortar. Cross sections of the specimens are compared with illustrations. Top-view images of the cement mortar with indicators of the physical characteristics, such as re-solidification, burning, and cracks are examined, and the possible causes of these characteristics are explained. The optical absorption rates of cement-based materials are quantified at wide ranges of wavelength to compare the absorption rates in accordance with the materials compositions. The chemical composition variation before and after laser cutting is also compared by EDX (Energy Dispersive X-Ray) analysis. In addition to these observations, material removal mechanisms for cement mortar are proposed.
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