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Experimental investigation on monitoring interelectrode gap of ECM with six-axis force sensor

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To realize on-line monitoring interelectrode gap, six-axis force sensor was embedded into main spindle of machine tool to measure force signals on cathode exerted by electrolyte. The force signals, three forces, and three moments in X, Y, Z directions, respectively, are considered as research parameters. On one hand, the forces exerted on the tool cathode by electrode are measured with six-axis force sensor as electrolyte flow system is activated and electrode is deactivated. On the other hand, the forces are tested when electrolyte flow system and electrode are both activated. Then, the relation between six force components and interelectrode gap are analyzed. Machining experiments using three types of tool, e.g., plane tool, slant tool, and blade tool, have been carried out to deduct experiential equations between six force components and gap according to least squares method. Furthermore, the experimental data with blade tool are put into experiential equation with slant tool to examine validity of measuring gap in ECM. The relation of parameters in equations is analyzed and a conclusion is drawn: in the range of 15% error, machining experiential equation with slant tool can be used to on-line measure the interelectrode gap in ECM.

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Correspondence to Yonghua Lu.

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Lu, Y., Liu, K. & Zhao, D. Experimental investigation on monitoring interelectrode gap of ECM with six-axis force sensor. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 55, 565–572 (2011).

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  • Six force components
  • Interelectrode gap
  • Experimental research
  • Electrochemical machining (ECM)