Product Code: ICAL07_P536

Rapid Fabrication of Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM) Electrodes by Laser Surface Cladding
Fernando Lusquiños, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Antonio Riveiro, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Rafael Comesaña, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Félix Quintero, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
J. del Val, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Juan Pou, Universidade de Vigo; Vigo Spain
Presented at ICALEO 2007

Under the term rapid prototyping(RP), different production techniques dedicated to the speedy fabrication of sample parts for demonstrations, evaluation or testing can be included. The rapid prototyping based on laser cladding stands out from the other technical approaches because of nature of the pieces obtained which confer them not only the geometrical specifications for testing purposes but the mechanical and chemical properties required for the real application.
This emerging RP technology tested by several researching institutions has provided the production of pieces built with different materials without additional treatment ensuring the mechanical response and the required surface finish. The successful application of this technology yields profits due to the shortening of the cost and manufacturing cycle times of the production.
An exploratory study about the implementation of the RP via laser surface cladding by pneumatic powder feeding to produce a continuous, homogeneous and dense electrodes employed for electrical discharge machining (EDM) without post-treatment will be presented.
The dimensional accuracy and the surface finish condition were methodically examined in order to tune the value of the processing parameters. Microstructure and phases identification analysis completed the basic study.
Finally, the characterization of the performance of the electrodes built by laser cladding was carried out in terms of the metal removal rate (NMR) and wear resistance (WR) through the tests realized by an EDM machine.

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