Title: Tool path planning for 3½½-axis machining

Authors: Armando Roman, Sanjeev Bedi, Fathy Ismail

Addresses: Automation and Control Group, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada. ' Automation and Control Group, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada. ' Automation and Control Group, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada

Abstract: 3½½-axis machining combines the flexibility of orientation offered by five-axis machines with the ease of programming offered by three-axis machines. In 3½½-axis machining the surface is divided into patches and the tool orientation is locked during the cutting of each patch. These regions or patches can be machined separately using a different tool orientation and feed direction. This paper presents improvements in the partitioning scheme and a method for determining an optimal tool direction and feed direction for each patch. Three different types of surface are utilised in this study, along with actual machining experiments. The results are compared to traditional three-axis machining and simultaneous five-axis machining.

Keywords: multi-axis machining; surface partitioning; tool orientation; tool direction; feed direction; three-axis machining; five-axis machining; tool path planning.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2006.011355

International Journal of Manufacturing Research, 2006 Vol.1 No.2, pp.248 - 265

Available online: 22 Nov 2006 *

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