Spiral Tool Path Generation Method on Mesh Surfaces Guided by Radial Curves

[+] Author and Article Information
Jinting Xu

School of Automotive Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, 116024, China

Yukun Ji

School of Automotive Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, 116024, China

Yuwen Sun

School of Mechanical Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, 116024, China

Yuan-Shin Lee

Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, U.S.A.

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4039918 History: Received January 28, 2018; Revised April 02, 2018


Spiral tool paths are preferable for CNC milling, especially for high-speed machining. At present, most spiral tool path generation methods aim mainly for pocketing and a few methods for machining complex surface also suffer from some inherent problems, such as selection of projecting direction, preprocessing of complex offset contours, easily affected by the mesh or mesh deformation. To address these limitations, a new spiral tool path method is proposed, in which the radial curves play a key role as the guiding curves for spiral tool path generation. The radial curve is defined as one on the mesh surface that connects smoothly one point on the mesh surface and its boundary. To reduce the complexity of constructing the radial curves directly on the mesh surface, the mesh surface is first mapped into a circular region. In this region, the radial lines, starting from the center, are planned and then mapped inversely onto the mesh surface, forming the desired radial curves. By traversing these radial curves using the proposed linear interpolation method, a polyline spiral is generated and then the unfavorable overcuts and undercuts are identified and eliminated by supplementing additional spiral points. Spline based technique of rounding the corners is also discussed to smooth the polyline spiral, obtaining a smooth continuous spiral tool path. This method not only can greatly simply the construction of radial curves and spiral tool path, but also has the ability of processing complex surfaces. Experimental results are presented to validate the proposed method.

Copyright (c) 2018 by ASME
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