Demands for miniature components are rapidly increased in the field of optics, electronics, and medicine. Various machining methods have been introduced for the fabrication of complex three-dimensional microfeatures. However, burrs, which are an undesired but unavoidable by-product of most machining processes, cause many problems in assembly, inspection, process automation, and precision component operation. Moreover, as feature sizes decrease, burr problems become more difficult to resolve. To address this problem, several deburring methods for microfeatures have been introduced, including ultrasonic, magnetic abrasive, and electrochemical machining methods. However, these methods all have some shortcomings, such as mechanical damage, over-machining, changes in the material properties of the finished surface, sharp edge blunting, and the requirement for subsequent processing to remove chemical residues. In this study, microelectrical discharge machining (micro-EDM) using low discharge energy and a small-diameter cylindrical tool is introduced for deburring microfeatures. This method allows the machining of very small amounts of conductive materials regardless of the material hardness, and provides easy access to small microscale features for selective deburring. The burr geometry generated by the micromilling process was investigated to establish a deburring strategy using micro-EDM. The proposed method was verified by experimental results using aluminum, copper, and stainless steel workpieces.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the Large Surface Micromachining System program of the Republic of Korea Ministry of Knowledge Economy, as well as by the National Research Laboratory Program (M10500000042-05J0000-04210) of the Republic of Korea Ministry of Education, Science and Technology.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ceramics and Composites
- Computer Science Applications
- Metals and Alloys
- Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering