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Adaption of graded Cr/CrN-interlayer thickness to cemented carbide substrates' roughness for improving the adhesion of HPPMS PVD films and the cutting performance

: Bouzakis, K.-D.; Makrimallakis, S.; Katirtzoglou, G.; Skordaris, G.; Gerardis, S.; Bouzakis, E.; Leyendecker, T.; Bolz, S.; Koelker, W.


Surface and coatings technology 205 (2010), No.5, pp.1564-1570
ISSN: 0257-8972
International Conference on Metallurgical Coatings and Thin Films (ICMCTF) <37, 2010, San Diego/Calif.>
Journal Article, Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IPT ()

High Power Pulsed Magnetron Sputtering (HPPMS) techniques jointly with the deposition of a graded Cr/CrN-nanointerlayer on cutting inserts can increase the film adhesion and consequently the tool life. These improvements depend on the roughness of the employed cemented carbide substrates. The investigations described in the present paper intend to explain the effect of Cr/CrN-interlayer thickness and substrate roughness on the coating adhesion and cutting performance. To attain various roughnesses, the applied cemented carbide inserts were superficially treated. These treatments were grinding at a medium roughness level, or grinding with subsequent polishing for enhancing the surface integrity and finally, in all cases, micro-blasting by fine Al2O3 grains. After Ar-ion etching, graded Cr/CrN adhesive layers with different thicknesses were deposited by HPPMS technology on the variously pretreated substrates. Subsequently, an approximately 3m thick (Ti,Al)N film was depos ited by HPPMS PVD on all used inserts. Rockwell C indentations and inclined impact tests were performed to assess qualitatively and quantitatively the films' adhesion. The cutting performance of the coated tools was investigated in milling of 42CrMo4 QT. FEM supported calculations of the developed stresses during the material removal process contributed in explaining the obtained tool wear results. In these calculations, the adhesion, dependent on the substrate roughness characteristics and on the adhesive interlayer thickness, was taken into account. The results revealed that the effectiveness of HPPMS adhesive graded Cr/CrN-nanointerlayer strongly depends on the substrate surface integrity and on the interlayer thickness. Thus, the film adhesion and consequently the cutting performance can be significantly improved if the interlayer thickness is adapted to the substrate roughness.