CIRP Encyclopedia of Production Engineering

2014 Edition
| Editors: The International Academy for Production Engineering, Luc Laperrière, Gunther Reinhart


Reference work entry



Polishing is a finishing process in which fine loose granules, while dispersed in a fluid or paste, are rubbed against the workpiece using a soft counterpart in order to smooth the surface of the workpiece without changing its nominal mass, dimension, or shape.

Theory and Application

Polishing process consists in exposing the surface of a solid workpiece to the action of a mixture of fluid (carrier) and fine granules pressed against a moving relatively soft counterpart (the lap). To assure a uniform distribution of pressure and at the same time the desirable softness, the laps typically used for industrial polishing consist of a soft pad adhered to a rigid plate onto which the normal load is applied. Common materials for a soft pad are pitch, leather, cloth, polyurethane, or other polymeric materials, whose hardness is ranging from 10 to 50 Shore D. The applied load is usually small, in order of dozens of KN/m 2. This process and its main...
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Copyright information

© CIRP 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Kaiserslautern FBKKaiserslauternGermany