The electrically non-conductive materials like glass, ceramics, quartz, etc. are of great interest for many applications in modern industries. Machining them with high quality and at a faster rate is a challenging task. In this study, a novel technique called grinding aided electrochemical discharge drilling (G-ECDD) is demonstrated which uses a hollow diamond core drill as the tool for performing electrochemical discharge machining of borosilicate glass. The new hybrid technique enhances the material removal rate and machining accuracy to several folds by combining the thermal melting action of discharges and grinding action of the abrasive tool. This paper presents the experimental investigation on the material removal rate during G-ECDD of glass while using different electrolytes. An attempt has been made to explore the influence of electrolyte temperature on G-ECDD performance by maintaining the electrolyte at different temperatures. Experiments were conducted using three different electrolytes which include NaOH, KOH, and the mixture of both. The results obtained from this study revealed that an increase in temperature will favor chemical etching as well as electrochemical reaction rate. Also, it was observed that heating the electrolyte leads to an increase in the bubble density and enhances the ion mobility. This causes the formation of gas film at a faster rate and thereby improving the discharge activity. Thus, machining will be done at a faster rate. Better results are obtained while using a mixture of NaOH and KOH. From the microscopic images of the machined surface, it was observed that material removal mechanism in G-ECDD is a combination of grinding action, electrochemical discharges, and chemical etching. Response surface methodology was adopted for studying the influence of process parameters on the performance of G-ECDD. The new technique of grinding aided electrochemical discharge drilling proved its potential to machine borosilicate glass and simultaneously offers good material removal rate, repeatability, and accuracy.
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science – SAGE
Published: Jan 1, 2018
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