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Research Papers

An Experimental and Numerical Study of Dieless Water Jet Incremental Microforming

[+] Author and Article Information
Yi Shi

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Northwestern University,
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
e-mail: yishi2014@u.northwestern.edu

Weizhao Zhang

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Northwestern University,
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
e-mail: weizhaozhang2014@u.northwestern.edu

Jian Cao

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Northwestern University,
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
e-mail: jcao@northwestern.edu

Kornel F. Ehmann

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Northwestern University,
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
e-mail: k-ehmann@northwestern.edu

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received May 27, 2018; final manuscript received January 28, 2019; published online February 28, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Gracious Ngaile.

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 141(4), 041008 (Feb 28, 2019) (10 pages) Paper No: MANU-18-1363; doi: 10.1115/1.4042790 History: Received May 27, 2018; Accepted January 28, 2019

Conventional single-point incremental forming (SPIF) is already in use for small batch prototyping and fabrication of customized parts from thin sheet metal blanks by inducing plastic deformation with a rigid round-tip tool. The major advantages of the SPIF process are its high flexibility and die-free nature. In lieu of employing a rigid tool to incrementally form the sheet metal, a high-speed water jet as an alternative was proposed as the forming tool. Since there is no tool-workpiece contact in this process, unlike in the traditional SPIF process, no lubricant and rotational motion of the tool are required to reduce friction. However, the geometry of the part formed by water jet incremental microforming (WJIMF) will no longer be controlled by the motion of the rigid tool. On the contrary, process parameters such as water jet pressure, stage motion speed, water jet diameter, blank thickness, and tool path design will determine the final shape of the workpiece. This paper experimentally studies the influence of the above-mentioned key process parameters on the geometry of a truncated cone shape and on the corresponding surface quality. A numerical model is proposed to predict the shape of the truncated cone part after WJIMF with given input process parameters. The results prove that the formed part's geometric properties predicted by the numerical model are in excellent agreement with the actually measured ones. Arrays of miniature dots, channels, two-level truncated cones, and letters were also successfully fabricated on stainless-steel foils to demonstrate WJIMF capabilities.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Water jet incremental microforming

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Fig. 2

Water jet incremental microforming machine: (a) schematic diagram and (b) photo of the machine

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Fig. 3

Water jet trajectory for the water jet incremental microforming

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Fig. 4

(a) Water jet incremental microformed cone shape part; (b) measured 3D profile of the truncated cone; and (c) comparison between the measurement and the ideal truncated cone (75 MPa water jet pressure, 20 mm/s feed rate, and 0.08 mm incremental step/pitch)

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Fig. 5

Comparison of logarithm strain in the radial direction ε1 between the measurement and predicted values by the cosine law (75 MPa water jet pressure, 20 mm/s feed rate, and 0.08 mm incremental step/pitch)

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Fig. 6

Effect of water jet pressure on wall angle and surface roughness

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Fig. 7

Surface changes as water jet pressure increases

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Fig. 8

Effect of incremental step/pitch on wall angle and surface roughness

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Fig. 9

Images of the inner surface of the formed cone with different incremental steps/pitches

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Fig. 10

Effect of feed rate on wall angle and surface roughness

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Fig. 11

Minimum water jet pressure for inducing plastic deformation on a 50.8-µm-thick stainless-steel foil

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Fig. 12

Effect of λ on wall angle and pressure

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Fig. 13

Configuration of numerical simulation in ABAQUS

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Fig. 14

(a) Sintech 20G tensile machine with a VIC-3D digital image correlation (DIC) system and (b) flow curve of the 316L stainless-steel foil

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Fig. 15

Comparison between FE simulation, measurement result, and actual formed part

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Fig. 16

Comparison between FE simulations and experiments in terms of (a) wall angle and (b) overall height of the truncated cone

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Fig. 17

CCD images of complex geometries

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Fig. 18

CCD images, microscopic image, and corresponding measurements of microdots

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