Mechanism of ultra-high-speed cutting of Ti-6Al-4V alloy considering time-dependent microstructure and mechanical behaviors


High-speed cutting (HSC) and ultra-high-speed cutting (u-HSC) (6.07–32.7 m/s) tests of Ti-6Al-4V alloy were developed based on an improved Split Hopkinson Pressure Bars (SHPB) system. Specific cutting energy was calculated and scaling effect was observed in HSC with different uncut chip thicknesses (20–200 μm). Considering time-dependent (in situ and ex situ) microstructure and mechanical parameters, chip morphology, adiabatic shear band (ASB), chip-free surface, material separation characteristic at chip-workpiece interface, and surface integrity were investigated. The micro-hardness within ASB was 25% higher than that outside of the ASB. Ultra-fine grains (77% grain sizes less than 330 nm) and micro-texture were observed by electron backscattering diffraction (EBSD) test. Grain refinement in ASB was explained by rotation dynamic recrystallization. The maximum shear strain and the range of shear strain rate in ASB at the condition of v = 10 m/s and t1 = 100 μm were approximately 17 and 6.44 × 106 s−1–8.5 × 106 s−1, respectively. Severe plastic deformation was observed by the dimples at ductile fracture surface along ASB. Mechanism of parabolic and ellipsoid dimples caused by shear and tensile stresses was explained for HSC of Ti-6Al-4V alloy. Additionally, the micro-hardness of machined subsurface and the ASB (ex situ parameter) exhibits a relationship with specific energy (in situ parameter), which can provide an effective way to control the formation of ASB and surface integrity by the control of in situ parameters in HSC and u-HSC conditions.

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Data availability

The data presented and/or analyzed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.


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The authors would like to thank Dr. Shuai Chen from Nano Analysis Department, Oxford Instruments Technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. for his help with the EBSD tests.


This work was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51575384) and the Natural Science Foundation of Tianjin (No. 16JCQNJC04600).

Author information




Conceptualization: Guang Chen; data curation: Jiaying Ge and Lianpeng Lu; formal analysis: Jian Liu and Chengzu Ren; funding acquisition: Guang Chen; investigation: Guang Chen, Jiaying Ge, Lianpeng Lu, and Jian Liu; methodology: Guang Chen, Jiaying Ge, and Lianpeng Lu; supervision: Guang Chen and Chengzu Ren; writing—original draft preparation: Guang Chen, Jiaying Ge, and Lianpeng Lu; writing—review and editing: Jian Liu and Chengzu Ren.

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Correspondence to Guang Chen.

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Chen, G., Ge, J., Lu, L. et al. Mechanism of ultra-high-speed cutting of Ti-6Al-4V alloy considering time-dependent microstructure and mechanical behaviors. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 113, 193–213 (2021).

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  • High-speed cutting
  • Ti-6Al-4V alloy
  • Chip morphology
  • Adiabatic shear band
  • Ultra-fine grain
  • Surface integrity