MCLEAN, VA--North American industrial laser manufacturers posted worldwide sales of more than $721.6 million during 2000, an increase of nearly 30 percent from 1999 sales.

According to the Laser Systems Product Group of the Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT,), sales within North America totaled $500.4 million, while exports amounted to $221.2 million. Half of the lasers sold were the CO2 variety, and more than 80 percent of sales were complete systems (a laser source and a workstation). Fifty percent of the lasers sold in 2000 were for cutting applications.

The AMT's data come from a quarterly survey of 46 North American suppliers of laser equipment.