Micro ECM for SMEs
Start date: Nov 1, 2010,
End date: Dec 31, 2012
"Current ECM process technology is limited in machining accuracy and process stability. The primary reason for this limitation is that the power supply units, which are at the heart of ECM are traditionally designed for the millisecond pulsed current range. Developing a power supply unit that has the capability of pulsing in the microsecond / nanosecond range, will result in more control of the process and better product, leading to improved uptimes on the shop floor and improved product quality. The SME partners in this project consortium have identified a commercial opportunity for a new generation of ECM that can offer: - Improved process stability and control - Increased accuracy (at a micron level) - Better process uptime and increased efficiency / outputs - Consistently better performing and better quality products - Shorter product development lead time This project will undertake the research and development work necessary to ensure that the SMEs in the consortium can realise this commercial opportunity through the development of a power supply unit (SMPS) that can support the next generation of ECM. The project aims to develop an SMPS that will deliver quicker electrical current pulsing rates in the microsecond / nanosecond range, resulting in an ECM with a machining accuracy better than 1 micron. The project will also develop a demonstrator / prototype that will be used for validating and demonstrating the next generation ECM. Based on research undertaken by CDAMC (in conjunction with SMPS manufacturers and suppliers), it is clear that power units in this performance range are currently not commercially available. The availability of a new generation of SMPS could result in a major step change in ECM capability and help sustain Europe’s leading position in ECM technology."
Get Access to the 1st Network for European Cooperation