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Research Papers

Laser-Assisted Machining of a Fiber Reinforced Metal Matrix Composite

[+] Author and Article Information
Chinmaya R. Dandekar, Yung C. Shin

Center for Laser-Based Manufacturing, School of Mechanical Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 132(6), 061004 (Oct 19, 2010) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4002548 History: Received June 16, 2009; Revised January 04, 2010; Published October 19, 2010; Online October 19, 2010

Metal matrix composites, due to their excellent properties of high specific strength, fracture resistance, and corrosion resistance, are highly sought after over their nonferrous alloys, but these materials also present difficulty in machining. Excessive tool wear and high tooling costs of diamond tools make the cost associated with machining of these composites very high. This paper is concerned with the machining of high volume fraction long-fiber metal matrix composites (MMCs), which has seldom been studied. The composite material considered for this study is an Al–2% Cu aluminum matrix composite reinforced with 62% by volume fraction alumina fibers (Al2%Cu/Al2O3). Laser-assisted machining (LAM) is utilized to improve the tool life and the material removal rate while minimizing the subsurface damage. The effectiveness of the laser-assisted machining process is studied by measuring the cutting forces, specific cutting energy, surface roughness, subsurface damage, and tool wear under various material removal temperatures. A multiphase finite element model is developed in ABAQUS/STANDARD to assist in the selection of cutting parameters such as tool rake angle, cutting speed, and material removal temperature. The multiphase model is also successful in predicting the damage depth on machining. The optimum material removal temperature is established as 300°C at a cutting speed of 30 m/min. LAM provides a 65% reduction in the surface roughness, specific cutting energy, tool wear rate, and minimum subsurface damage over conventional machining using the same cutting conditions.

Copyright © 2010 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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References

Figures

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Figure 1

Finite element mesh for alumina fiber reinforced aluminum MMC

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Figure 2

Schematic of LAM experimental setup with CO2 laser

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Figure 3

Absorptivity and emissivity results for Al–2% Cu/Al2O3 composite

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Figure 4

Thermal model validation for a laser power of 134 W, the dark thick line corresponds to the 10 point moving average

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Figure 5

Effects of Tmr on surface roughness and specific cutting energy for VC=30 m/min, f=0.02 mm/rev, and d=0.5 mm

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Figure 6

Effects of Tmr on the ratio of thrust force to cutting force for VC=30 m/min, f=0.02 mm/rev, and d=0.5 mm

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Figure 7

Machined workpieces at f=0.02 mm/rev, VC=30 m/min, and d=0.5 mm for (a) conventional machining and (b) LAM at Tmr=300°C

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Figure 8

Tool wear rates as a function of the material removal temperature for VC=30 m/min, d=0.5 mm, and f=0.02 mm/rev

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Figure 9

Tool wear rates as a function of the cutting conditions for VC=30 m/min, d=0.5 mm, and Tmr=300°C in the case of LAM

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Figure 10

Subsurface damage measurement at f=0.02 mm/rev, VC=30 m/min, and d=0.5 mm for conventional machining

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Figure 11

Subsurface damage at f=0.02 mm/rev, VC=30 m/min, and d=0.5 mm for LAM at Tmr=300°C

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Figure 12

Simulated results: Vc=30 m/min, f=0.02 mm/rev, and a tool rake angle of 5 deg for conventional machining

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Figure 13

Simulated results: Vc=30 m/min, f=0.02 mm/rev, and a tool rake angle of 5 deg for LAM at a Tmr of 300°C

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Figure 14

Comparison of damage depth between experimental and simulated results

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Figure 15

Effect of tool rake angle on simulated damage depth at a Tmr of 300°C

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