Comprehensive experiments have been conducted to determine the influence of cutting conditions on the generation of Acoustic Emission (AE) signals while machining S45C steel. The simultaneous observation of AE-sensor signals and tool dynamometer signals provides extensive data on the orthogonal cutting process. Theoretical relationships drawn between the energy content of the AE-signal and the plastic work of deformation in the primary and secondary cutting zone will be discussed with these data. In addition, shortcomings of the established theory will be highlighted. A relationship between the AE-signals generated and the strain rate will be estimated. The influence of flank wear on the generation of AE signals will be emphasized. Finally, the feasibility of utilizing AE in tool wear sensing will be pointed out while comparing AE-signal generation and machining force measurements for the orthogonal cutting process.

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