Title: Accessibility comparison for optimal cutter selection in five-axis finish milling of sculptured surfaces

Authors: L.L. Li, Y.F. Zhang, A.Y.C. Nee, J.Y.H. Fuh, Y.S. Wong, M. Yeung, Z. Gui

Addresses: Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore. ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore. ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore. ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore. ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore. ' Integrated Manufacturing Technologies Institute, National Research Council Canada, London, ON, Canada. ' Integrated Manufacturing Technologies Institute, National Research Council Canada, London, ON, Canada

Abstract: In five-axis milling of sculptured surfaces, a cutter|s Accessibility map (A-map) refers to a feasible posture range, in terms of tilting and rotational angles, along which the cutter does not cause any interference [Local-Gouging (LG), Rear-Gouging (RG) and Global-Collision (GC)] at a point on the part surface. In the authors| earlier work, a point-based algorithm has been developed that is able to find a cutter|s A-map at a point on the part surface. It is essential to find the cutter|s A-maps at all the sampled points of the part surface to check whether a cutter can finish a given sculptured surface. Repeated checking on the same set of sampled points is needed for all the available cutters to find the optimal cutter. In this paper, the authors have made an accessibility comparison study between cutters of different dimensions by considering cutters| geometric characteristics. Based on the findings, when the A-map of a larger cutter is available, the A-map of a smaller cutter may be obtained without running the time-consuming point-based algorithm. An efficient algorithm has subsequently been developed for finding the optimal cutter while avoiding redundant checking at some of the sampled points. Several examples are presented to show the validity and efficacy of the developed algorithm.

Keywords: accessibility map; five-axis milling; finishing; global collision; local gouging; rear gouging; optimal cutter selection; sculptured surfaces; five-axis machining; process planning; CAPP.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2006.011352

International Journal of Manufacturing Research, 2006 Vol.1 No.2, pp.176 - 197

Available online: 22 Nov 2006 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article