Carbon dioxide laser systems with continuous beam powers in excess of 15 kW offer the material processing industries a new method of directing and controlling energy to do work. This paper summarizes some of the important characteristics of such a lasers ystem and describes laser material processing. Laser weld penetration obtained at speeds over 100 in. /min (42 mm/s) are similar to those of vacuum electron beam under identical conditions. The laser achieves kerf widths of less than 0.10 in. (2.5mm) in cutting titanium and Rene 95 alloys with thicknesses up to 2.2 in. (55 mm), using an inert gas assist to reduce surface oxidation. Transformation hardening is achieved in depths up to 0.060 in. (1. 5 mm) at hardness values of Rockwell C 60 with distortion of less than 0.002 in. (0. 05 mm) TIR. Laser surface alloying techniques can modify the surface chemistry to resist wear or corrosion.