MicroLucent®: A Breakthrough in Machining Translucent Materials


A few years ago, Bullen faced a problem. While we pride ourselves in our excellent service and quality, our customers were still searching for higher-quality machining at a fraction of the cost. To top that off, new markets were emerging that ultrasonic machining just wouldn’t cut it for. Literally. So how do you machine parts that your current processes don’t quite match up to? You go back to the drawing board. You invent something new.

Our team invested over 5 years of research and development at our facility to create the solution known today as MicroLucent®.

What is MicroLucent®?

Now that you’ve been introduced to it, let’s jump back to the basics. We named this process MicroLucent® (pronounced: micro-loo-cent). How do you name something new? Well, naming it was easy (or so we’ll claim!). MicroLucent® uses micron-level precision to get our customers precise, quality machining on their parts – which gave us “Micro.” “Lucent” came from the result of our team’s tireless efforts at figuring out a way to get that cut or hole drilled – laser (or light) processing.

What does MicroLucent® do?

So what can it do? MicroLucent® is intended for micron-level precision machining on transparent materials such as glass and quartz. We can use this process for machining features or holes into materials. It can be used to machine round, rectangular, and irregular-shaped holes. It works great for slot machining, cavity machining, and outside and inside diameter machining. Machining blind cuts and cavities can also be possible with MicroLucent®. 

How is MicroLucent® different from traditional machining?

Bullen’s MicroLucent® machining process has many advantages over traditional machining. As mentioned it allows us to get the epitome of accuracy by allowing for control down to a few microns. We achieve superior prices through this type of machining and we have low to no upfront NRE or tooling charges, depending on your needs. 

MicroLucent® is a high throughput process. Laser machining like what we have invented will result in no damage to the clear substrates we machine. Unlike traditional machining, this process has no HAZ (Heat Affected Zone) which means when we use MicroLucent® to cut or machine your materials, there are no changes in the material properties surrounding the exact cut or hole. MicroLucent® is also an improved process from traditional grinding as it is more affordable and has near zero depth of damage.

Let’s talk more about us.

For over 50 years, Bullen has been a family-owned business that you can trust. We all bring a commitment to excellence, humility, integrity, and teamwork when we show up every day. Our mission is to be a collaborative partner to you, so you can get the best product possible. 

How can you be sure of that? 

Well, our experience and reputation are a great place to start. Bullen has stood as a globally recognized leader in ultrasonic machining of high-quality components used in semiconductors, MEMs, transportation, defense & aerospace, and medical & life sciences industries throughout our lifetime. 

We have partnered with Fortune 50 companies and smaller businesses as well. We are ISO 9001 Certified, AS9100 Certified, IATF 16949 Compliant, and ITAR Registered so you can be sure we’re adhering to the strictest standards of quality and security possible. Plus, as we’ve proven, we have capabilities beyond ultrasonic machining. We offer a variety of technologies to fit our customer’s needs and we are always working to improve with our R&D team. 

MicroLucent® might be our newest offering, but if you’re not sure it’s right for you, check out our blog on Ultrasonic Machining or our glass and ceramic blogs.

Talk to our team.

Interested in knowing more? Connect with our team at 937-456-7133 or sales@bullentech.com to learn more about what MicroLucent® can do for you.

Once we determine a plan, we’ll work on prototyping and a pilot production. Then you’ll be well on your way to having us as your partner for machining your materials during production.

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