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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.

1, February 2014

STUDY OF RECAST LAYERS AND SURFACE ROUGHNESS ON AL-7075 METAL MATRIX COMPOSITE DURING EDM MACHINING
Rajesha S1, C.S. Jawalkar2, Radha Raman Mishra1, A.K. Sharma3, Pradeep Kumar3
1

Department of Mechanical Engineering, JSS Academy of Technical Education, Noida, India 2 Department of Production Engineering, PEC University of Technology, Chandigarh, India 3 Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, India

ABSTRACT
Demand for low weight to strength ratio for exclusive application in automobile and aerospace components created scope for advance studies on Metal Matrix Composites (MMCs). However, machining of MMCs challenges for conventional machining processes due to uneven hardness, matrix of composites and undesired tool life. Electric Discharge Machining (EDM) is one of the unconventional material removal process, which offers alternatives for machining of MMCs because, being a non-contact process it can be machine excessive harder material, intricate shape with better surface finish and tool life. The evolved heat during EDM process and subsequent flushing of machined debris and rapidly resolidified layer is formed by the re-solidification of residual molten material on the machined surface during the EDM process leaves behind recast layers which is extremely hard and brittle. In the presents study optimization of process parameters to minimize the surface roughness of the rapidly resolidified layer of Al 7075 MMC while machining using EDM process is carried out using the Taguchi tequniues. The gap current, pulse on-time and pulse off-time were considered as process parameters. The formation of resolidified layers is investigated in terms of the surface roughness as response variables inside the hole and near the hole while EDM drilling.

KEYWORDS
MMCs, EDM, Recast layer, Taguchi Technique.

1. INTRODUCTION
In EDM process material removal is due to melting and vaporization of workpiece material, however presence of dielectric flushing flied created rapid cooling close to machined surface produces the resolidification of the molten material as layers on the machined surface. The thickness of the recast layer is varies with machining parameters such as peak current and pulse on-time [13]. The recast layer thickness increases with increasing peak current, pulse on-time and effect of dielectric flushing [1]. The average recast layer thicknesses increases with increase in pulse energy, higher discharge current and longer duration of pulse-on. The micro cracks on recast layers excessive amount of carbon presence, while using hydrocarbon-based dielectric fluid [2]. The changes in pulse on-time durations is more significant factor than changes in the peak current for variation in the recast layer thickness and it is observed that the majority of cracks
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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

terminated within the recast layer or at the interface of the recast layer [3]. The thickness of layers observed about 10 m when parameter like pulse current of 8 Amps and pulse on-time of 8 micro second [4]. Use of brass electrode shows the better material removal rate then the copper electrode while EDMing 2124 Al alloy matrix reinforced with SiC in volume Fractions of 15% and 25%. The EDM is a feasible process causing surface softening at lower cutting speeds, but at higher speed caused micro damage in the surface and subsurface areas [5]. The effect of process parameters on metal removal rate, re-cast layer and surface finish was studied with statistical models of the EDM process and the pulse current is critical factor affect the surface finish [6]. During the study of machining of Al/SiC MMC's, it was observed that EDM process was slow but suitable for machining the composite under specified conditions with a crater-like surface and the size of the crater increased with an increase in discharge energy [7]. The increase in Material Removal Rate (MRR), Tool Wear Rate (TWR) and better surface finish with the increase in the flushing pressure, reported that improve MRR [8]. During machining of 6061 Al-MMC with 10% SiC reinforcement the MRR and TWR were higher for larger pulse current and pulse on-time levels, at the same time it leads to taper, radial overcut and poor surface finish [9]. The tungsten carbide-cobalt (WC-Co) composite material, having very high hardness and excellent resistance to shock wear, it was reported that the increase in pulse on-time increases the machining instability due to higher rate of melting and solidification and leads to poor surface finish [10]. While investigating machining characteristics, surface integrity and material removal mechanisms of advanced ceramic composite (Al2O3SiCTiC) with EDM process show that the surface roughness and recast layer thickness increases with increase in discharge current and pulse ontimes and also rough EDMing leads to thermal spell and poor surface integrity [11]. Surface integrity of EDM processed materials needs further investigation. In the present study, Al 7075 MMC is selected as a workpieces for machining using EDM process for processing the hole. The experiment is designed with Taguchi methods and gap current; pulse on-time and pulse off-time were selected as control variable and surface roughness as a response. The surface roughness of recast layer is investigated inside and near the hole surface. The ANOVA analysis was carried out to analyze the surface roughness inside and near the hole surface. The optimization has been carried out on process variables.

2. MATERIALS SELECTION
Material selection is one of the impotent processes for any investigation based on the recent development and there end applications. The Al-7075 MMCs of hardness 120.9 HV at load 100gms are considered for present investigation due to exclusive use of automobile components. The composition of Al-7075 is shown in Table 1. The spark fusion oil rated 450 is used as a dielectric fluid for EDM process and electrolytic copper of 6 mm diameter as an electrode for present investigation.
Table1. Composition of Al-7075

3. EXPERIMENTATION
The present investigation EDM machine (Model No. EMS-5030, compact type) is used for machining Al 7075 metal matrix composite. The die casted Al 7075 is initially cut in to 50x20x5mm (Length x width x thickness) and fixed into machine table. The electrolytic copper
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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

electrode is fixed in to Z-axis and auto positioning means placing the electrode and workpiece in a predefined position with respect to each other. The depth of cut has been fixed as 2mm. The experiments were planned and conducted as per Taguchis standard orthogonal array L-9 and were repeated twice for adequacy. To determine the optimal set of the process parameters like pulse current, pulse on-time and pulse off-time, that result in the minimum recast layer surface roughness during machining of Al 7075 metal matrix composites, the process parameters and their levels are shown in Table 2. The average values of surface roughness were measured using a perthometer both inside the holes and near the holes EDM machined surface and results are tabulated in Table 3.
Table 2. Experimental parameters and their levels

Level 1 2 3

Gap current (I) Amp 5 15

Pulse-On time (Ton) s 10 15

Pulse-Off time (Toff) s 3 6

25 Supply voltage Open gap voltage Electrode Dielectric Dielectric pressure Depth of cut Gap width

20 9 - 420 V, 3-phase, 50Hz - 1405% tolerance - Electrolytic copper, cylindrical shape in 6mm dia - spark fusion oil Rated 450, - 250 N/m2 - 2mm - 0.05mm

Table 3. Experimental Results for Recast Surface Roughness (Ra values) for both Inside and Outside Hole

3.1. Analysis of Recast Layer Surface Roughness Inside the Hole


ANOVA has been carried out for effect of process parameters on surface finish inside the hole. The analysis shows that pulse off-time has the maximum effect of 39.47%, followed by gap current 17.35% and pulse on-time 11.78% shown in the Figure 1.

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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

Table 4. ANOVA S/N Ratio (Inside the Holes)

Figure 1. Effect of parameters on the recast layer surface layer roughness inside the hole

The effect of gap current on surface roughness is shown in the Figure 2. The initial trend shows the roughness marginally increases with increasing gap current. The current exceed 15A the roughness decreases, due to high energy in the gap provides the stable condition for material removal of all alloys of the composites. This is also evident in increasing the pulse on-time (15s) marginally improves the surface finish (Figure 3) indicate that high energy requirement, while machining Al-7075 metal matrix composites. At low energy status many alloys of the composites may not be evaporate or melt and flushed out. Lower the level of on-time shows better the surface finish due to higher flushing time removes the debris and minimal recast layers formation. Lower level of off-time imply higher on-time, quality of the surface finish decreases (Figure 4) due to high melting rate and decrease of flushing time leads to high rate of recast layer formation.

Figure 2. Gap Current Vs Ra and S/N ratio

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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

Figure 3. Pulse on-time Vs Ra and S/N ratio

Figure 4. Pulse off-time Vs Ra and S/N ratio

3.2 Analysis of Recast Layer Surface Roughness Near the Hole


ANOVA and signal to noise ratio and mean effect on surface finish near the hole is tabulated in Table 5. It is shows that Pulse off-time has the maximum effect (35.34%), Pulse on-time (16.21% ) and Gap current (9.19%) contributions respectively on surface finish as shown in the Figure 5.
Table 5. ANOVA S/N Ratio (near the holes)

SOURCE Gap Current Pulse On time

SS 2.9625 5.2259

DOF 2 2

V 1.4811 2.6129

P 9.1907 16.2152

F-Ratio 0.23414 0.41307

Pulse Off time 11.3903 2 5.6951 35.3419 0.90039 ERROR 12.6515 2 6.3257 39.2539 Total 32.2299 8 100 SS= Sum of squares, DOF=Degree of Freedom, V= Variance, P=Percentage, SST: 101.3865, T: 86.05813, CF:822.8891

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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

Figure 5. Effect of parameters on the recast layer surface layer roughness near the hole

The effect of process parameters near the hole were analysed, the gap current increases the surface quality decline (Figure 6) due to spell out of hot debris from the hole and solidifies quickly nearby surface. Duration of pulse on-time increases surface roughness decline marginally and further increase of pulse on-time quality of the surface improves (Figure 7). Increase of pulse off-time above 6s there is more time to solidified near hole and roughness increases (Figure 8).

Figure 6. Gap Current Vs Ra and S/N ratio

Figure 7. Pulse on-time Vs Ra and S/N ratio

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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

Figure 8. Pulse off-time Vs Ra and S/N ratio

3.3. Confirmation Experiments


Three confirmation experiments were conducted at the optimum levels of the process parameters. The mean value of recast layer surface roughness inside hole and near hole by the optimal setting of the process parameters was found within the confidence interval of the predicted optima of quality characteristics. Process optimization for inside the hole and near the hole is tabulated in Table 6.
Table 6. Optimum value of Process Parameters for both Inside and Near the Hole

4. RESULT AND DISCUSSION


The relative effect of control parameters on recast layer and surface roughness inside the hole and near the hole during machining of Al 7075 metal matrix composite while machining using EDM process. It shows that all the three parameters have strong influence on recast layer surface roughness in both the cases. Inside the hole and near the hole, average value of Ra of recast layer is the minimum at gap current 25 Amps and 5 Amps. It may be due to recasting of removed material in the form of layers after being machined from the metal matrix composite more in the hole in comparison to near the hole surface which leads to ineffective material removal in the hole ineffective flushing of dielectric fluid, so at higher gap current poor surface finish is produced at near hole surfaces due to high material removal rate. The average value of Ra of recast layer with pulse on-time has the minimum value 10 s for inside the hole and 20 s for near the hole. As the pulse on time increases, the energy available for spark increases. Inside the hole, increase in pulse on-time increases the Ra value because of increase in material removal rate but further Ra value decreases as no fresh material removal takes place and only recast layer is being removed again and again. Near the hole, the increase in pulse on-time reduces the effective material removal drastically because of recasting of removed material more in comparison of inside the hole.

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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

The pulse off time is having minimum Ra value in both the cases (inside and near the hole) at 6s. Initially it was observed that surface roughness decreases by decreasing the pulse off-time, it may be because the material melted from metal matrix composite had not got adequate time to get recasted in large amount but after 6 s there was sufficient time for recasting so surface roughness started increasing with increase in pulse off-time. Since, among all three parameters pulse on-time has least influence on recast layer surface roughness inside the hole and gap current has least influence on recast layer surface roughness near hole surface, therefore nominal level of pulse on-time and gap current for optimal recast layer surface layer is justifiable.

5. CONCLUSION
The recast layer surface roughness of Al 7075 metal matrix composites has been investigated using the Taguchi method. Effect of process parameters like gap current, pulse on-time and pulse off-time on surface roughness have been studied and optimization were carried out. The following conclusions were drawn from the investigation: 1. The optimum levels of the gap current (25A), pulse on-time (20s) and pulse off-time (6s) has been established for inside the hole getting minimum recast layer surface roughness during machining of Al 7075 metal matrix composite during EDM machining. 2. The optimum levels of the gap current (5A), pulse on-time (15s) and pulse off-time (6s) has been established for near the hole getting minimum recast layer surface roughness during machining of Al 7075 metal matrix composite during EDM machining. 3. The minimum recast layer surface roughness is found with gap current 15 Amps, pulse on-time 10 s and pulse off-time 6 s inside the hole. The current 15 Amps, pulse ontime 15 s and pulse off-time 6 s for near the hole case. 4. Roughness profiles indicate that minimum value of Ra and Rz is found at run 4 (both near the hole and inside the hole). 5. The Surface Roughness initially increases rapidly with an increase in pulse off-time and then decreases slowly with an increase in pulse off-time.

REFERENCES
[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] Bhattacharyya, B., Gangopadhyay, S., and Sarkar, B. R., (2007) Modelling and Analysis of EDMED Job Surface Integrity, J. Mater. Process. Technol., Vol. 189, No. 13, pp 169177. Ekmekci, B., (2009) White Layer Composition, Heat Treatment, and Crack Formation in Electric Discharge Machining Process, Metall. Mater. Trans. B, Vol. 40, No. 1, pp 7081. Lee, H. T., and Tai, T. Y., 2003, Relationship between EDM Parameters and Surface Crack Formation, J. Mater. Process. Technol., Vol. 142, No 3, pp 676683. Mohri, N., Fukusima, Y., Fukuzawa, Y., Tani, T., and Saito, N., (2003) Layer Generation Process on Work-Piece in Electrical Discharge Machining, CIRP Ann., Vol. 52, No. 1, pp 157160. Ramulu, M. Taya, (1989) Machinability of SiC/Al Composites, Journal of Material Science, Vol. 24, No. 3, pp 1103-1108. Hung, N.P, Yang, L.J., and Leong, K.W., (1994) Electrodischarge Machining of Cast Metal Matrix Composites, Journal of Material Processing Technology, Vol. 44, No. 4, pp 229-236. Muller, F., and Monaghan, J., (2000) Non Conventional Machining of Particle Reinforced Metal Matrix Composite, International Journal of Machine tools and manufacture, Vol. 40, No. 9, pp 13511366. 60

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[8]

Yan, B.H., Wang, C.C, (1999) The Machining Characteristics of Al203/ 6061 Al Composite using Rotary Electrodischarge Machining with a Disc like Lube Electrode, Journal of materials processing technology, Vol. 95, No. 6, pp 222-231. [9] Singh, Narender P., Raghukandan, K. and Pai, B.C., (2004) Optimization by Grey Relational Analysis of EDM Parameters on Machining Al-10% SiC Composites, Journal of Material Processing Technology, Vol. 155, No. 56, pp 1658-1661. [10] Mahdavinejad, R.A., Mahadevnejad, A., (2005) EDM of WC-Co, Journal of Material Processing Technology, Vol. 162, No. 63, pp 637-643. [11] Patel, K.M., Pandey, Pulak. M., P., Venkateshwara Rao, (2009) Surface Integrity and Material Removal Mechanisms Associated with EDM of Al2O3 Ceramic Composites, International Journal of Refractory metals and hard materials, Vol. 27, No. 3, pp 892-899.

Authors
First Author Name Dr. Rajesha S Job title Professor Organization/institution JSS Academy of Technical Education, Noida, India Biographical note Presently working as a Professor and Head in Department of Mechanical Engineering at JSS Academy of Technical Education, Noida. I have received my B Tech, Mysore University M Tech, from VTU Belgam and Ph.D, from Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee. My research interests are including Advance Machining Processes, Composite Material and Hybrid Machining Process. Second Author Name Dr. C.S. Jawalkar Job title Assistant Professor Organization/institution PEC University of Technology, Chandigarh, India Biographical note Presently working as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Production Engineering at PEC University of Technology, Chandigarh, India. I have received my Ph.D, from Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee. My research interests are including Advance Machining Processes, Composite Material and Hybrid Machining Process.

Third Author Name - Radha Raman Mishra Job title Assistant Professor Organization/institution JSS Academy of Technical Education, Noida, India Biographical note Presently working as an Assistant Professor in Department of Mechanical Engineering at JSS Academy of Technical Education, Noida. I have received my M. Tech degree from Indian Institute of Technology, BHU, and Varanasi. My research interests are including Composite Materials, Advance Machining Processes and Microwave Material Processing. Fourth Author Name Dr. A K Sharma Job title Associate Professor Organization/institution Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, Roorkee, India Biographical note Presently working as an Associate Professor in Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, Roorkee, India. I have received my B Tech, M Tech, and PhD from Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, Chennai, India. My research interests are including Advanced Manufacturing Methods, Hybrid Finishing Processes, Microwave Material Processing, and Surface Engineering.

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International Journal of Recent advances in Mechanical Engineering (IJMECH) Vol.3, No.1, February 2014

Fifth Author Name Dr. Pradeep Kumar Job title Professor Organization/institution Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, Roorkee, India Biographical note Presently working as a Professor in Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, Roorkee, India. I have received my B Tech, M Tech, and PhD from Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, India. My research interests are including Quality Engineering, Supply Chain Management, Advanced Manufacturing Processes, Metal Casting, Industrial Engineering, Supply Chain Management, Quality Engineering, and Advanced Manufacturing Process.

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