Research Papers

Synthesis and Characterization of ZrO2 Coatings on Micro End Mills With Sol–Gel Processing

[+] Author and Article Information
Justin D. Morrow

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
University of Wisconsin–Madison,
Madison, WI 53706
e-mail: jdmorrow@wisc.edu

M. Isabel Tejedor-Anderson

Water Science and Engineering Laboratory,
University of Wisconsin–Madison,
Madison, WI 53706
e-mail: mitejedo@wisc.edu

Marc A. Anderson

Water Science and Engineering Laboratory,
University of Wisconsin–Madison,
Madison, WI 53706
Electrochemical Processes Unit,
IMDEA Energy Institute,
Móstoles Madrid E-28935, Spain
e-mail: nanopor@wisc.edu

Luis A. M. Ruotolo

Department of Chemical Engineering,
Federal University of São Carlos,
São Carlos, SP 13565-905, Brazil
e-mail: pluis@ufscar.br

Frank E. Pfefferkorn

Associate Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
University of Wisconsin–Madison,
Madison, WI 53706
e-mail: pfefferk@engr.wisc.edu

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Manufacturing Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MICRO- AND NANO-MANUFACTURING. Manuscript received November 6, 2013; final manuscript received July 28, 2014; published online August 12, 2014. Editor: Jian Cao.

J. Micro Nano-Manuf 2(4), 041002 (Aug 12, 2014) (10 pages) Paper No: JMNM-13-1079; doi: 10.1115/1.4028124 History: Received November 06, 2013; Revised July 28, 2014

The objective of this paper is to develop a coating method for placing ultrathin zirconia films, fabricated using sol–gel methods, onto micro end mills. Sol–gel synthesis is investigated because of its potential as a low energy and inexpensive method for depositing a variety of wear resistant and chemically stable oxide coatings that could potentially extend tool life. Two sol–gel based deposition methods are investigated: dip-coating and electrophoretic deposition (EPD). The coatings are deposited on 300-μm-diameter micro end mills. Initial results suggest that sol–gel coating methods can produce the required coverage and conformity in the cutting zone. However, preliminary findings show that the coating is removed in the cutting zone after a short time of machining (6 s). The tool pretreatment and extent of sintering, which affect surface adhesion coating mechanical properties, require further study and optimization.

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Fig. 1

Generalized process diagram of coating procedure

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Fig. 2

Diagram of the experimental setup for (a) EPD and (b) dip-coating. Note that the tools are shown at different scales in (a) and (b).

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Fig. 3

Representative image of the overall geometry of a micro end mill (a), the tool tip (b), and the tool rake face inside the flute the machining zone, extending 50 μm from the tip (c)

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Fig. 4

Optical images of an (a) uncoated micro end mill and the same tool dip-coated with ultrathin nanocrystalline zirconia before (b) and after (c) heat treatment

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Fig. 5

SEM micrographs of micro end mill surface before coating (a) and after EPD (b), illustrating the change in surface morphology after coating

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Fig. 6

Micro end mills are fixed rigidly to a microscopy sample holder for FIB milling (a). The view normal to the holder is shown for the dip-coated (b) and electrophoretically coated (c) tools.

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Fig. 7

A sintered dip-coated tool after FIB milling (a) showing the placement of five FIB milled trenches, with the regions of interest boxed. Arrows indicate the viewing angle for subsequent evaluation of the coating in these regions ((b) and (c)).

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Fig. 8

Optical images of micro end mills dip-coated at1 dip at 11 g/l (a), two dips at 11 g/l (b), and 1 dip at 22 g/l (c). The condition in (b) appears best, showing full coverage without cracking.

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Fig. 9

Optical images of electrophoresis coated micro end mills after 5 min (a), 7.5 min (b), and 10 min (c)

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Fig. 10

SEM images at the cutting edge of a micro end mill after dip-coating. Conformal coating is present on the rake face and at the edge. Little coating is present on the flank face.

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Fig. 11

SEM images at the cutting edge after electrophoresis coating in a region with very little coating (a) and with significant coating (b)

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Fig. 12

Optical images of a dip-coated end mill before (a) and after (b) a sonication adhesion test

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Fig. 13

Cross-sectional images of the dip-coated (a) and EPD coated (b) samples showing a significant difference in appearance

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Fig. 14

Overall image taken of a FIB milled trench on the EPD coated tool showing a significant local variation in the surface texture (a). A corresponding variation in color was observed (b). The red lines illustrate a geometrical feature used as an orientation tool.

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Fig. 15

Comparison of coating thickness measured after FIB milling to the colors observed in the region of interest before FIB milling for dip-coating (a) and EPD coating (b)

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Fig. 16

Optical images of a zirconia coated micro end mill before (a) and after (b) machining showing the area of removed coating

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Fig. 17

SEM images of an EPD coated and heated micro end mill (a) showing effects of sonication testing (b) and machining (c)

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Fig. 18

Optical images of an uncoated micro end mill (a) and an EPD coated end mill (b) after machining for 50 mm. The dark material on the tool surface in (b) is deposited aluminum. The coating appeared to be fully removed in this region.



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