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Bonded Abrasives are made by incorporating abrasives grains into a matrix, which can be resin and fillers or vitreous

materials. Usually, such abrasives contain porosity which helps to control the thermal aspects of the process. Coated Abrasives are abrasive grains incorporated or cloth backing. The formulation and choice of additives are usually a closely guarded secret of the manufacturer. In order to choose the right wheel material and structure several questions must be asked: 1. Type of use: cutting, grinding, polishing etc 2. Type of article to be ground and materials: Nickel alloy blade, metal cylinder etc 3. Type of abrasive grain needed: Aluminum oxide, boron nitride etc. 4. Type of specific physical property: porous, compacted etc. 5. Type of bonding: vitrified, resin etc. 6. Type of fabrication process: Cold or hot press etc. The structure of the bonded abrasives is described in terms of proportions of abrasive phase, the volume of porosity and the volume fraction of the bond as described in Figure 1. Each axis represents 100% of one component with the opposite side corresponding to 0% and intermediate percentages represented by the fractional distance from the side to the axis. Actual wheels compositions do not cover the whole composition range represented by the phase diagram but are restricted to a limit range by technological and practical factors.

Figure 1: grinding wheels phase diagram Grains: Abrasive grains are the tools of the grinding and cutting process. In the past abrasives grains were derived from natural minerals, such as emery, quartz sand, and so on, today, the industry is almost entirely dependant upon synthetic grains, which are far more consistent and costeffective. Some physical properties of the most important abrasives materials are Summarized in Table 1. Table 1: Physical properties of main abrasive grains Property Crystal Structure Density (g/cm 3) Melting Point (C) Knoop Hardness (kg/mm 2) Aluminum Oxide Hexagonal 3.98 2040 2100 Silicon Carbide Hexagonal 3.22 ~2830 2400 Boron Nitride Cubic 3.48 ~3200 4700 Diamond Cubic 3.52 ~3700 8000

The characteristics of the grains as size, shape, strength, friability are important and control the wheel's performance as the matrix material. Table 2: Typical characteristics of abrasive grains.


Aluminum Oxide Pink/red (3% Cr) White Single Crystal Regular 40% ZrO 2 Sintered Silicon Carbide Green Black

Knoop Hardness kg/mm 2 2260 2120 2280 2040 1460 1370

Friability Index

65.0 56.6 47.7 35.6 7.9 6.5

2840 2680

62.5 57.2

Fused Aluminum Oxide and its derivatives: Aluminum Oxide is derived from Bauxite in an industrial high-energy process. During the melting stage the crystalline structure as well as the chemistry can be controlled and results in pure crystal Aluminum oxide, white fused Aluminum oxide (low Iron and Silica content), Semifriable Aluminum oxide (low titania levels), Monocrystalline Aluminum oxide (strong cutting edges and a high compressive strength) and Red and Pink Aluminum Oxide (high Chrome levels). Applications: For grinding high tensile strength materials, as well as rough grinding, deburring, snagging, cutting and fettling of low-alloy, ferrous materials (Regular Aluminum Oxide). For grinding hardened and high alloy steels up to 62 Rc (White Aluminum Oxide). For high-alloy steels, grinding operations with high form and dimensional accuracy requirements (Monocrystalline Aluminum oxide). Aluminum Oxide-Zirconia: The production of aluminum-oxide Zirconia grains involves similar equipment and process to that of standard Aluminum Oxide. The presence of Zirconia phase and its crystal size can improve the toughness of the grain compared to white or brown Aluminum Oxide. Applications: Used in steel mills and foundries. Sol-Gel

Sol-Gel Aluminum Oxide and derivatives: Aluminum Oxide produced by the sol-gel technique has very fine crystals and therefore retains sharp cutting edge as the material wear. One of the disadvantages of the Sol-gel Aluminum Oxide is it low thermal stability with respect to fused Aluminum Oxide. Applications: Used on both ferrous and non-ferrous materials Silicon Carbide: The material is harder than Aluminum Oxide, but it is usually much more friable. The manufacturing process makes controlled use of high energy to obtain green or black> silicon carbide. The black silicon carbide has a higher impurity content than the green grain. Applications: For grinding low tensile materials like cast iron, non-ferrous and non-metallic. Resin based: Phenolic thermosetting resins are still by far the most important organic bonds for grinding and cutting wheels. The properties of the bond can be varied to give elastic or thermal properties by incorporating plasticizers or fillers. Compared to vitrified wheels, resin-bonded wheels are much more resistant to shock and loading and heavy-duty use. They are therefore, more popular in snagging operations and for cut-off wheels where uncontrolled lateral stresses can be very high. When extremely high strength is required, for example in high-speed operations (>100 meter per second surface speed), then the resin may be further reinforce with glass fiber. There are limitations, however, in terms of temperature that can be permitted at grinding/cutting surface. Also, resins wheels can be attacked by alkaline grinding fluids. Vitreous based: Compared to resin-bonded wheels, those with vitrified bonds can withstand much higher temperatures, but they are often significantly less tough. Also, the vitrified wheels are unaffected by water, acids and oils. The essential raw materials are clay, feldspar and glass frits, similar to those in the ceramics whitewares sector. The vitreous bond phase is made during the firing of the wheel at high temperature up to 1250 degrees C and higher. Fillers: Fillers are added into the mixture for different purposes as described in the table below: Table 3: Fillers Type and functionality Function Production of pores Description Temporary Filler Material Nut shell, Wax, Naphthalene

Semi-permanent Permanent Lubricants Curing aids Pressing aids

Graphite, coke Glass balls, Spherical aluminum oxide Cryolite, Chlorides, Iron Pyrites, Phosphates Calcium Oxide, Magnesium Oxide Stearates, Wax

Active grinding effects Production aids

Thrufeed: The workpiece passes between the grinding and the regulating wheels, from one side to the other side of the machine. Infeed: The part is placed on the workrest between the grinding and the regulating wheels and hold in position against the end-stop. Endfeed:Used to produce tapered cylindrical parts. The grinding wheel, the regulating wheel and the work blade are set in fixed relation to each other, and the workpiece fed from the front to a fixed end-stop. The Centerless Grinding Principle Centerless grinding is an OD ( outer diameter) grinding process. In difference from other cylindrical processes, where the work piece is held in the grinding machine, while grinding between centers, the workpiece is not mechanically constrained during centerless grinding. Therefore the parts to be ground on a centerless grinder do not need center holes, drivers or workhead fixtures at the ends. Instead, the workpiece is supported in the grinding machine on its own outer diameter by a workblade and by the regulating wheel. The work piece is rotating between a high speed grinding wheel and a slower speed regulating wheel with a smaller diameter.

G: Grinding Wheel - R: Regulating Wheel - B: Blade - W: Work piece The blade of the grinding machine is usually positioned in a way that the center of the work piece is higher than the virtual line between the centers of the regulating wheel and the grinding wheel. Also the blade is designed with an angle in order to ensure that the work piece is fixed between the blade and the regulating wheel. The regulating wheel consists of soft material like rubber and can contain some hard grain material to achieve good traction between work piece and regulating wheel. Roundness Centerless grinding can perform excellent roundness of the work piece. However, caused by the simultaneous suspending and machining of the work piece surface it is possible that process typical roundness errors are generated. Proper adjustment of the grinding machine and the grinding slot geometry is essential. When a high spot comes in contact with the regulating wheel, then on the other side of the work piece a low point will be ground. However this low point must not be exactly in the opposite side of the work piece. The grinding machine has to be set up in a way that a polygon form is ground with so many corners that it is almost round finally.

g: grinding wheel - r: regulating wheel - w: work piece - d g: diameter grinding wheel - d r: diameter regulating wheel - p: penetration depth - n: polygon order Grinding Wheels and Dressing

Automation There are mainly two different types of centerless grinding:

In-feed grinding The work piece can have different outer diameters over the length and either only part of the work piece is ground or the total work piece is ground using an adapted grinding wheel. Thru-feed grinding Cylindrical work pieces can be ground using this method. The work piece can be longer than the grinding wheel and will still be ground over the full length. It is also possible to grind small work pieces with this method. In this case, several work pieces are ground same time in the machine and high throughput can be achieved. Advantages of Centerless Grinding Machines By line wise support of the work piece it is possible to grind soft or brittle work pieces (low tension)  It is not necessary to prepare the work piece for fixing in the grinding machine (faults cause by fixing are eliminated)  Loading/Unloading of the work piece is simple and easy to automate.  When using continues through feed grinding there is no time loss for changing the work piece.  Long work pieces can be handled with rather small machines.  Very high grinding wheel rotation speed can be achieved.