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Proceedings Paper

Ultraprecision, high stiffness CNC grinding machines for ductile mode grinding of brittle materials
Author(s): Patrick A. McKeown; Keith Carlisle; Paul Shore; R. F.J. Read
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Paper Abstract

Under certain controlled conditions it is now possible to machine brittle materials such as glasses and ceramics using single or multi-point diamond tools (grinding), so that material is removed by plastic flow, leaving crack-free surfaces. This process is called 'shear' or 'ductile' mode grinding. It represents a major breakthrough in modern manufacturing engineering since it promises to enable: - complex optical components, both transmission and reflecting to be generated by advanced CNC machines with very little (or even zero) subsequent polishing. - complex shaped components such as turbine blades, nozzle guide vanes, etc. to be finish machined after near net shape forming, to high precision in advanced ceramics such as silicon nitride, without inducing micro-cracking and thus lowering ultimate rupture strength and fatigue life. Ductile mode "damage free" grinding occurs when the volume of materials stressed by each grit of the grinding wheel is small enough to yield rather than exhibit brittle fracture, i.e. cracking. In practice, this means maintaining the undeformed chip thickness to below the ductile-brittle transition value; this varies from material to material but is generally in the order of 0.1 pm or 100 nm, (hence the term "nanogrinding" is sometimes used) . Thus the critical factors for operating successfully in the ductile regime are machine system accuracy and dynamic stiffness between each grit and the workpiece. In detail this means: (i) High precision 'truing' of the diamond grits, together with dressing of the wheel bond to ensure adequate ' openness'; (ii) Design and build of the grinding wheel spindle with very high dynamic stiffness; error motions, radial and axial, must be considerably less than 100 nfl. (iii) Design and build of the workpiece carriage motion system with very high dynamic stiffness; error motions, linear or rotary, must be well within 100 nm. (iv) Smooth, rumble-free, high-stiffness servo-drives controlling the motions which form the chip. In general, and as a rule of thumb, a machine "loop-stiffness" (between tool and workpiece) not less than 300 N,4im (static) is necessary.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 October 1990
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 1320, Infrared Technology and Applications, (1 October 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.22336
Show Author Affiliations
Patrick A. McKeown, Cranfield Precision Engineering Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Keith Carlisle, Cranfield Precision Engineering Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Paul Shore, Cranfield Precision Engineering Ltd. (United Kingdom)
R. F.J. Read, Cranfield Precision Engineering Ltd. (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1320:
Infrared Technology and Applications
Alan H. Lettington, Editor(s)

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