Abstract: Nowadays several qualified technologies have been established for the manufacturing of precision moulds. The fields of application can mainly be divided into moulds for non-optical and optical components. For optical moulding inserts the development goes from basic rotational symmetric geometries to complex surfaces like steep aspheres and freeforms which can additionally be overlaid with microstructures. The moulded components require a figure accuracy in the (sub-) micrometer and surface roughness in the nanometer range while moulds for replication also need advanced materials with high surface integrity. Here, diamond machining processes, e.g. diamond turning and milling as well as precision grinding and polishing are necessary for the manufacturing of precision moulding inserts from various materials. Depending on the material and application of the applied part to be replicated different replication techniques are used like injection moulding of plastics, hot embossing and precision moulding of optical glasses. For non-optical applications the current technical progress is driven by miniaturized products which are typically produced in mass production by replication techniques like hot embossing or metal forming. Each of these processes requires specific properties of the mould. Therefore, the surface topography and tribological conditions are of particular importance.
Abstract: Compound micro-machining is the most promising technology for the production of miniaturized parts and this technology is becoming more and more important and popular because of growing demand for industrial products with not only increased number of functions but also of reduced dimensions, higher dimensional accuracy and better surface finish. In this paper, the development efforts in micro/nano-machining based on solid tools (tool-based micro/nano-machining) in NUS are introduced. In order to achieve meaningful implementation of micro-machining techniques, this research seeks to address four important areas; namely (a) development of machine tool capable to do both conventional micro-machining, (b) process control, (c) process development to achieve necessary accuracy and quality, and (d) on-machine measurement and inspection. An integrated effort in these areas has resulted in successful fabrication of micro-structures that is able to meet the miniaturization demands of the industry. In the area of nano-machining machine tool and process developments have also been carried out for electrolytic in-process dressing (ELID) grinding and ultra precision machining using single point and poly crystalline diamond tools to produce nano surface finish on hard and brittle materials. An ultra-precision diamond turning machine has been developed which incorporates a fast and fine tool servo system to produce nano-precision surfaces and features.
Abstract: Nanoindenting and nanoscratching were used to investigate removal and fracture characteristics of cemented tungsten carbide (cWC). Nanoindentation results indicated that the elastic modulus and hardness of WC grains were significantly greater than those measured in cobalt binder rich regions, respectively. Few evidences of cracking or fracture were observed on the indented surfaces using both in-situ atomic force microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. However, the pop-in events were observed from indenting load-displacement curves and the corresponding acoustic emissions were detected, indicating the occurrences of brittle fracture. Nanoscratch results demonstrated that similar removal characteristics existed, but cracking was observed in both surface and subsurface of the scratched samples.
Abstract: There is a demand for high-efficiency and high surface integrity grinding of fused silica. Ductile grinding is an ideal method for producing a mirror finished surface on hard and brittle materials to significantly decrease polishing time. However, the fused silica is still difficult to ductile grind because of its high brittleness. A creep feed taper grinding method was applied to investigate the relationship between maximum grit depth of cut and surface integrity of fused silica. Ductile mode grinding was achieved on fused silica. When the depth of cut exceeds the critical wheel depth of cut, the surface suddenly changes from the ductile mode to the brittle mode. At the same ratio of wheel speed and table speed, the critical wheel depth of cut is noticeably increased by increasing the wheel speed which caused an increase in the temperature at the interface of grains and workpiece. The depth of subsurface damage (SSD) was investigated by polishing the ground surface. The experiment results show that the depth of SSD is deepest in transition mode and stables in brittle mode.
Abstract: Experimental research on surface roughness and material removal rate of D2 steel lapping is carried out using a polymer plate. The tribological mechanism of lapping for ductile materials is presented and the polymer-based lap plate is described in this study. Thus, an investigation is conducted using ANOVA method to determine the effects of lapping time, lap rotation speed, applied load and abrasive particle size on the lapping process for D2 steel discs with the polymer-coated plate. Regression models are put forward and verified for predicting surface roughness and MRR (material removal rate) as a result of the control variables. An optimal combination of process parameters is given for optimizing the lapping process.
Abstract: A study was carried out to investigate effects of crystallographic structure on the machining performance with polycrystalline oxygen free copper (OFC) using a single crystalline diamond (SCD) micro-tool. The SCD micro-tool used in this study fabricated with a focused ion beam (FIB) has a cutting length of around 30 µm on the primary clearance face. It was found that a change in crystallographic orientation resulted in a variation in machining force, chip thickness and shear angle, leading to a change in machined surface integrity. When a micro-size tool traverses within a grain at a machining direction aligned with a particular crystallographic orientation, the work material in front of the machining tool is found to be severely deformed. If the orientation changes to a less favorable orientation, this may lead to a much reduced shear angle, a thicker chip, striation at the chip back, higher machining forces and a degraded machined surface. This study contributes to the understanding of the physics of micro scale mechanical machining (micro-machining).
Abstract: Recently, in accordance with the technical development and miniaturization of the information equipments, the demand of optic elements with high precision and miniaturization is increased. The die is used for manufacturing the optic elements. Thus, it is needed to machine the die with high efficiency and high precision. As the material of die, hard material including cemented carbide and ceramics is used. However, when hard material is machined, there is a problem that severe tool wear occurs, and worn tool shape is transferred into the surface so that precision machining cannot be realized. In this study, a method, called cutting point swivel machining, is proposed to suppress tool wear by using the tool with special chamfer and all parts of tool tip. The effect of tool wear suppression is verified by the machining of SiC. Then, the relation between the suppression of tool wear and tool rotation period is verified.
Abstract: One-directional ultrasonic vibration assisted milling system is designed and its performance is investigated in terms of machined surface quality under 135,000 rpm. The ultrasonic vibration generator excites the workpiece with a frequency around 40 kHz and amplitude of a few micro meters. The milling tool’s cutting speed is controlled by an air-bearing spindle system. Both feed-directional and cross-feed directional ultrasonic vibration assistance are considered in order to understand the mechanism of ultrasonic vibration assistance for surface roughness generation. A comparison is done on a milled surface which is generated with and without ultrasonic vibration assistance. The experimental results show that ultrasonic vibration assistance can improve the machined surface quality which depended on the cutting edge radius and the feed per tooth.