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OPTIMIZATION OF PROCESS PARAMETERS

OF Al2024-SiC COMPOSITE ON QUALITY


CHARACTERISTICS IN END MILLING

Abstract
Since the inception of aerospace industry, Aluminum has been the most suitable
material for fabrication due to its light weight. But its strength is low and this
disadvantage has been overcome by alloying and by making Aluminium composite.
Two different additions of SiC were used and the weight fractions were 10%, 15%.
Mechanical and Metallurgical characterization were done to assure the proper quality
characteristics of the composite formed. Besides LOM, SEM, XRD, Vicker’s
Microhardness tests were done to find the effect of silicon carbide addition and to find
the variation in hardness of two composites (for Al2024-10%SiC & Al2024-15%SiC).
In the current investigation, Taguchi method is utilized for the modeling and
optimization of surface finish in terms of surface roughness and production rate in
terms of material removal rate (MRR) using carbide end milling tools. The Aluminum
Silicon Carbide composite plates (Al2024-SiC) underwent slot making by end milling
process using carbide tools. Four cutting parameters viz. RPM of spindle of end
milling equipment, feed in mm/sec, DOC in mm and numbers of flutes of the cutter
were selected as input factors and a design matrix for trials was developed in
accordance with L27 orthogonal array. The tabulated information/input data of the
experimental trial runs was used for running the optimization process with the help of
Taguchi technique. It was inferred that 3000 RPM, feed 400 mm/min, DOC @ 0.3
mm for both MMCs viz. Al2024-10%SiC & Al2024-15%SiC whereas in case of
flutes of end mill the assorted outcomes are garnered. A 4-fluted end mill tool gives
good surface finish for Al2024-10% SiC composite whereas for Al2024-15%SiC
better surface finish is obtained with the help of a 2- fluted end mill tool. With higher
silicon carbide percentage in the produced AMMC, less fluted end mill generates
better surface finish. Increased RPM, reduced feed, reduction in DOC and lower
number of flutes leads to lower value of the surface roughness within specified test
range. Feed and RPM of the end mill cutter are predominant parameters than the DOC

[i]
as far as desired for surface finish is considered. The Taguchi method was employed
and ANOVA analysis was carried out to assay the ramification of input parameters on
the M.R.R. of SiC reinforced Al2024 alloy composite. In end milling process, the
parameters spindle rpm at 3000, feed at 800 mm/min. and depth of cut of 0.9 mm and
two fluted end mills are optimized parameters to obtain higher MRR in case of
AMMC Al2024-10%SiC whereas corresponding values for Al2024-15%SiC are 3000
rpm, feed 800 mm/min, doc 0.9 mm and four fluted end mills. The feed and cutting
speeds are by far the significantly influential factor than the D.O.C. for material
removal rate. As the content of SiC in percentage terms is increased in AMMC, the
end mill cutter having more number of flutes provides higher MRR.

[ii]