Tool wear and surface roughness in micro-milling of aluminium and high-alloyed aluminium materials using cutting tools made of binderless carbide
Micro-milling can be applied for manufacturing in a wide range of materials and complex geometries. This process is especially important for the aerospace industry. High-alloyed aluminium is a common material for aerospace applications with complex micro- and macro-geometry due to its high wear resistance. The costs-effectiveness of producing these parts can be increased by using tools with improved wear behaviour and higher life times. However, wear-resistant tools are often associated with higher tool costs, which reduces the cost-effectivness of the whole production. An innovative solution is offered by the use of a cutting tool made of binderless tungsten carbide. The micro-milling of conventional and high-alloy aluminium with a new cutting material based on a binderless tungsten carbide is analysed in this investigation. The absence of a binding phase leads to an increased hardness and improves the wear behaviour of these tools. Therefore, tools with a tool diamete r of D = 10 mm were manufactured and there machinability was successfully proven. The feasibility of these innovative tools is demonstrated in a series of experiments. The experimental investigations were carried out on the five-axis high precision machine tool PFM 4024-5D PRIMACON GMBH, PeiÃenberg, Germany, with a workpiece made of TiAl 48-2-2. A surface roughness of Ra = 0.202 Âµm was detected after a path length due to primary motion lc = 70 m without any noticeable wear marks on the cutting tool. These results show the economic potential for milling tools based on binderless carbide for achieving high precision surfaces while reaching high lifetimes.