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Research Papers

The Effect of the Electrical Discharge Machining Process on the Material Properties of Nonconductive Ceramics

[+] Author and Article Information
Nirdesh Ojha

Laboratory for Process Technology,
IMTEK-Department of Microsystem Engineering,
University of Freiburg,
Georges-Koehler-Allee 103,
Freiburg 79110, Germany
e-mail: nirdesh.ojha@gmail.com

Florian Zeller

Laboratory for Process Technology,
IMTEK-Department of Microsystem Engineering,
University of Freiburg,
Georges-Koehler-Allee 103,
Freiburg 79110, Germany
e-mail: zeller@imtek.de

Claas Mueller

Laboratory for Process Technology,
IMTEK-Department of Microsystem Engineering,
University of Freiburg,
Georges-Koehler-Allee 103,
Freiburg 79110, Germany
e-mail: claas.mueller@imtek.uni-freiburg.de

Holger Reinecke

Laboratory for Process Technology,
IMTEK-Department of Microsystem Engineering,
University of Freiburg,
Georges-Koehler-Allee 103,
Freiburg 79110, Germany
e-mail: holger.reinecke@imtek.uni-freiburg.de

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Manufacturing Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MICRO- AND NANO-MANUFACTURING. Manuscript received July 20, 2015; final manuscript received November 19, 2015; published online January 5, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Don A. Lucca.

J. Micro Nano-Manuf 4(1), 011007 (Jan 05, 2016) (5 pages) Paper No: JMNM-15-1049; doi: 10.1115/1.4032155 History: Received July 20, 2015; Revised November 19, 2015

Electrical discharge machining (EDM) is widely used to manufacture complex shaped dies, molds and critical parts in conductive materials. With the help of an assisting electrode (AE), EDM process can be used to machine nonconductive ceramics. This paper evaluates the mechanical properties of three high-performance nonconductive ceramics (ZrO2, Si3N4, and SiC) that have been machined with the EDM process using AE. Mechanical properties such as Vickers hardness (HV 0.3), surface roughness (Sq), and flexural strength of the machined and the nonmachined samples are compared. The EDM process causes decrease in Vickers hardness, increase in surface roughness, and decrease in flexural strength.

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Figures

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Fig. 3

Custom built four-point bending test setup to measure the flexural strength

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Fig. 2

ZrO2 samples for four point bending test: P) polished sample, A) sample with screen printed AE, I) sample after EDM, and M) sample after the thermal annealing

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Fig. 1

Principle of EDM machining of nonconductive ceramics for four-point bending test: (a) start, (b) during, and (c) after the EDM process

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Fig. 4

Vickers hardness of ceramics

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Fig. 5

Surface roughness (Sq) of ceramics

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Fig. 6

Weibull probability plot for (a) ZrO2, (b) Si3N4, and (c) SiC ceramics

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