Machinability of titanium alloy through laser machining: material removal and surface roughness analysis

  • Naveed AhmedEmail author
  • Shafiq Ahmad
  • Saqib Anwar
  • Amjad Hussain
  • Madiha Rafaqat
  • Mazen Zaindin


Laser milling is a competent precision process especially when the work material is hard-to-machine such as titanium alloys. While performing the laser milling, a slight change in one of the laser parameters results in an abrupt change in the machining outcomes. A close match between the designed and the machined geometries is the essence of precision machining. A precise control over the material removal rate per laser scan is highly desirable but difficult to achieve. The difficulty level becomes higher if high surface finish is desired alongside the precision machining. In this research, the objective was set to perform the laser milling on titanium alloy (Ti-6Al-4V) with 100% control over material removal rate (MRR) per laser scan and minimum surface roughness (SR). Influence of the five laser parameters (laser intensity, pulse frequency, scan speed, layer thickness, and track displacement) on MRR and SR has been deeply investigated. Significance of each laser parameter is evaluated through ANOVA. Mathematical models for both the responses are developed to estimate the resulting responses at any parametric setting. Models have also been validated through confirmatory tests. Optimization of laser parameters is of great importance to remove the material exactly equal to the desired depth with minimum surface roughness. Therefore, the optimized combinations of laser parameters have been proposed which ensure the conformance of 100% MRR and minimum surface roughness with composite desirability > 0.9. Confirmatory experiments revealed that the optimized parameters are capable to produce the laser milling results as per the models’ predicted results. Additionally, the microstructure of the subsequent layers below the milled area has also been examined and compared with the microstructure of the bulk Ti-6Al-4V. By the use of optimized parameters, microstructure of the sub-layers remains unchanged as compared with the microstructure of the base metal. No evidence has been found altering the microstructure of the sub-layers.


Laser milling Titanium alloy Material removal rate (MRR) Surface roughness (SR) Mathematical model Optimization 



The authors extend their appreciation to the Deanship of Scientific Research at King Saud University for funding this work through research group no. (RG- 1438-089).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Ltd., part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Naveed Ahmed
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Shafiq Ahmad
    • 2
  • Saqib Anwar
    • 2
  • Amjad Hussain
    • 1
  • Madiha Rafaqat
    • 1
  • Mazen Zaindin
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Industrial and Manufacturing EngineeringUniversity of Engineering and TechnologyLahorePakistan
  2. 2.Department of Industrial Engineering, College of EngineeringKing Saud UniversityRiyadhSaudi Arabia
  3. 3.Department of Statistics and Operations Research, College of ScienceKing Saud UniversityRiyadhSaudi Arabia

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