Optimal CNC plunge cutter selection and tool path generation for multi-axis roughing free-form surface impeller channel
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Plunge milling is the most effective way for rough machining of impeller parts, but previous research had not considered the optimization of plunge cutter selection and tool path. In this paper, a new method for optimizing the plunge cutter selection and tool path generation in multi-axis plunge milling of free-form surface impeller channel is proposed in order to improve the efficiency in rough machining. Firstly, in the case of fixing a rotation axis at a certain angle in five-axis machine, a mathematical representation is formulated for the geometric model of the cutter interfering the impeller, and an optimization model of the cutter size is established at a cutter contact point on the impeller channel surface, so the largest tool could be determined. Secondly, by analyzing the machine tool movement characteristics, the geometric constraint model of the plunge tool path which relative to the largest tool, step distance, and row space is established, and a tool orientation calculation method of impeller channel machining is given, and then, the plunge tool path and tool orientation could be obtained. Finally, the generated tool path and tool orientation are simulated and verified in practical processing. Simulation and experimental result shows that the rough machining efficiency of the impeller part is improved up to 40 % with this method.
KeywordsImpeller channel Plunge milling Tool path Tool orientation The largest tool
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