Grinding-aided electrochemical discharge machining of particulate reinforced metal matrix composites

J. W. Liu, Tai Man Yue, Z. N. Guo

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)


A grinding-aided electrochemical discharge machining (G-ECDM) process has been developed to improve the performance of the conventional ECDM process in machining particulate reinforced metal matrix composites (MMCs). The G-ECDM process functions under a combined action of electrochemical dissolution, spark erosion, and direct mechanical grinding. The tool electrode has a coating containing a hard reinforcement phase of diamond particles. The MMC employed in this study was Al2O3particulate reinforced aluminum 6061 alloy. The material removal mechanism of this hybrid process has been analyzed. The results showed that the grinding action can effectively remove re-cast material deposited on the machining surface. The surface roughness (Ra) measured for the G-ECDM specimen was ten times smaller than that of the specimen machined without grinding aid (i.e., ECDM alone). Moreover, the material removal rate (MRR) of G-ECDM was about three times higher than that of ECDM under the experimental conditions of this study. The voltage waveform and crater distribution were also analyzed, and the experimental results showed that the G-ECDM process operates in a stable condition. The relative importance of the various processing parameters on MRR was established using orthogonal analysis. The results showed that MRR is influenced by the machining parameters in the order of duty cycle > current > electrolyte concentration. This study showed that the G-ECDM process is superior to the ECDM process for machining particulate reinforced MMCs, where a higher machining efficiency and a better surface quality can be obtained.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2349-2357
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Issue number9-12
Publication statusPublished - 11 Mar 2013


  • Electrochemical discharge machining
  • Grinding
  • Material removal rate
  • Metal matrix composites
  • Surface roughness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Software
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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