SUNConferences, Southern African Institute of Industrial Engineering 2013

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An Overview of Advanced Cooling Techniques for Titanium Alloy Machining in Aerospace
Cilliers Prins, Nico Treurnicht

Last modified: 2013-06-23

Abstract


Titanium is classified as a difficult to machine superalloy. Its low thermal conductivity causes a concentration of heat in the tool. It causes cutting tools to overheat during machining, that leads to increased machining cost. However, recent advances in cooling technology in aerospace manufacturing, specifically the combination of through spindle cooling and split tools, is claimed to yield improved Ti-6AL-4V machining productivity. The development was led by a tool supplier placing a premium on confidentiality. The result is as this technology has only recently been released into the market, rather little if any performance studies have been published in scientific literature.

The paper investigates the potential machining benefits of through spindle cooled split tools for Ti-6AL-4V milling. The geometry, coolant flow and operational characteristics of the split tools are described. The performance of other more conventional cooling methods such as a nozzle directed high pressure coolant stream is presented from literature as well as own experiments. In conclusion an application domain is discussed where the technology offers improvements over existing technologies.


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