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Manufacturing Technology II

Sub Code MEC330

Non-Traditional Manufacturing (NTM)

Non-Traditional Machining (NTM) Processes


We all know that the term machinability refers to the case with
which a metal can be machined to an acceptable surface finish

Nontraditional machining processes are widely used to

manufacture geometrically complex and precision parts for
aerospace, electronics and automotive industries
In ordinary machining we use harder tool to work on workpiece,

this limitations is overcome by unconventional machining

Unconventional machining is directly using some sort of indirect

energy for machining

Ex: Sparks, Laser, Heat, Chemical etc.

Applied in EDM , Laser Cutting Machines , etc.

Non-Traditional Machining (NTM) Processes


Conventional machining involves the direct contact of tool and

work -piece

Whereas unconventional machining does not require the direct

contact of tool and work piece

Conventional machining has many disadvantages like tool wear,

residual stresses which are not present in Non-conventional

Non-Traditional Machining (NTM) Processes

The requirements that lead to the development of
nontraditional machining.

Very high hardness and strength of the work material

The work piece: too flexible or slender to support the cutting or

grinding forces
The shape of the part is complex, such as internal and external
profiles, or small diameter holes

Surface finish or tolerance better than those obtainable

conventional process
Temperature rise or residual stress in the work piece are

Non-Traditional Machining (NTM) Processes

Machining characteristics

The machining characteristics of different non-conventional

processes can be analyzed with respect to :
Metal removal rate

Tolerance maintained

Surface finish obtained

Depth of surface damage

Power required for machining

Non-Traditional Machining (NTM) Processes

NTM Processes are characterised as follows:

Material removal may occur with chip formation or even no chip

formation may take place.

For example in AJM, chips are of microscopic size

And in case of Electrochemical machining material removal occurs

due to electrochemical dissolution at atomic level
In NTM, there may not be a physical tool present.

For example in laser jet machining, machining is carried out

by laser beam

However in Electrochemical Machining there is a physical tool

that is very much required for machining

Non-Traditional Machining (NTM) Processes

NTM Processes are characterised as follows:

In NTM, the tool need not be harder than the work piece material.

For example, in EDM, copper is used as the tool material to

machine hardened steels

Mostly NTM processes do not necessarily use mechanical energy to

provide material removal

They use different energy domains to provide machining.

For example, in USM, AJM, WJM mechanical energy is used to

machine material, whereas in ECM electrochemical dissolution
constitutes material removal

Non-Traditional Machining (NTM) Processes

Advantages of Non-conventional machining:

High accuracy and surface finish
Less/no wear

Tool life is more

Quieter operation

Disadvantages of non-conventional machining:

High cost

Complex set-up

Skilled operator required

Classification of NTM Processes

Classification of NTM Processes

The classification of NTM processes is carried out depending on the

nature of energy used for material removal.

Mechanical Processes

Water Jet Machining (WJM)

Abrasive Jet Machining (AJM)

Abrasive Water Jet Machining (AWJM)

Ultrasonic Machining (USM)

Electrochemical Processes

Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

Electro Chemical Grinding (ECG)
Electro Jet Drilling (EJD)

Classification of NTM Processes

Electro-Thermal Processes

Electro-discharge machining (EDM)

Electron Beam Machining (EBM)
Laser Beam Machining (LBM)

Chemical Processes

Chemical Milling (CHM)

Photochemical Milling (PCM) etc.

Classification of NTM Processes

Schematic representation of various NTM metal cutting operations

Water jet machining (WJT)

Water jet acts like a saw and cuts a narrow groove in the material
Pressure level of the jet is about 400 MPa

No heat produced

Cut can be started anywhere

Without the need for predrilled holes

Burr produced is minimum

Environmentally safe and friendly manufacturing

Application used for cutting composites, plastics, fabrics, rubber,

wood products etc. Also used in food processing industry.

Water jet machining (WJT)

Abrasive Jet Machining (AJM)

In AJM a high velocity jet of dry air, nitrogen or CO2 containing

abrasive particles is aimed at the work piece

The impact of the particles produce sufficient force to cut small

hole or slots, deburring, trimming and removing oxides and other
surface films

Abrasive Jet Machining (AJM)

Abrasive Jet Machining (AJM)

Common applications:

Fast and precise cutting of fabrics

Vinyl, foam coverings of car dashboard panels

Plastic and composite body panels used in the interior of cars

Cutting glass and ceramic tiles

Limitations of AJM

MRR is rather low (around ~ 15 mm3/min for machining glass)

Abrasive particles tend to get embedded particularly if the work

material is ductile
Tapering occurs due to flaring of the jet
Environmental load is rather high.

Abrasive Jet Machining (AJM)

Different engineering components machined with AWJ

Abrasive Jet Machining (AJM)

Abrasive Water Jet Machining (WAJM)

Abrasive Water Jet Machining (AWJM) belong to mechanical group

of non-conventional processes

In AJWM processes, the mechanical energy of water and abrasive

phases are used to achieve material removal or machining.

Advantages of WJA and WAJM

WJM and AWJM have certain advantageous characteristics, which

helped to achieve significant penetration into manufacturing
Extremely fast set-up and programming
Very little fixturing for most parts

Machine virtually any 2D shape on any material

Very low side forces during the machining
Almost no heat generated on the part
Machine thick plates

The applications and materials, which are generally

machined using WJ and AWJ



Ultrasonic Machining (USM)

Ultrasonic machining is a non-traditional machining process.

USM is grouped under the mechanical group NTM processes.
Fig. briefly depicts the USM process.

Ultrasonic Machining (USM)

In USM, a tool of desired shape vibrates at an ultrasonic frequency

over the workpiece
Generally the tool is pressed downward with a feed force, F.

Between the tool and workpiece, the machining zone is flooded

with hard abrasive particles generally in the form of a water based


As the tool vibrates over the workpiece, the abrasive particles act

as the indenters and indent both the work material and the tool

The abrasive particles, as they indent, the work material is

removed, particularly if the work material is brittle

Due to crack initiation, propagation and brittle fracture of the


Hence, USM is mainly used for machining brittle materials


Ultrasonic Machining (UM)

In UM the tip of the tool vibrates at low amplitude and at high

This vibration transmits a high velocity to fine abrasive grains
between tool and the surface of the work piece.
Material removed by erosion with abrasive particles.
The abrasive grains are usually boron carbides.

This technique is used to cut hard and brittle materials like

ceramics, carbides, glass, precious stones and hardened steel.

Ultrasonic Machining (USM)

Up-down vibration of tool

hammers the abrasive particles
against workpiece, causing cutting

Ultrasonic Machining (UM)


Ultrasonic Machining (USM)

machining hard and brittle

semiconductors, glass, ceramics, carbides etc





Used for machining round, square, irregular shaped holes and

surface impressions

Machining, wire drawing, punching or small blanking dies

Welding plastics (package sealing), Wire-bonding (IC chips)



Rather high tool wear

Low depth of hole

Diffusion Coating

Surface Coatings *

Diffusion Coating is a process in which an alloying element is

diffused into the surface of the substrate, thus altering the
The alloying elements can be supplied in solid, liquid or gaseous
This process has different names, depending on the diffused

Electroplating, Electroless plating and Electroforming

Plating as with other coating processes,

Imparts the properties of resistance to wear and corrosion

High electrical conductivity

Better appearance and reflectivity



Surface Coatings *

In electroplating, the workpiece (cathode) is plated with a

different metal (anode), while both are suspended in a bath
containing a water-based electrolyte solution

Although the plating process involves a number of reactions,

basically the process consists of the following

1. The metal ions from the anode are discharged using potential
energy from the external source of electricity
2. The metal ions combine with the ions in the solution and
3. They are deposited on the cathode

Chemical cleaning, degreasing and thorough soaking of the

workpiece prior to the plating are essential
All the metals can be electroplated



Surface Coatings *



Surface Coatings *

Electroplate thickness range from a few atomic layers to a

maximum of about 0.05 mm
Complex shapes may have varying plating thickness

Chromium, nickel, cadmium, copper, zinc and tin are common

plating materials

Chromium Plating is done by plating the metal first with copper,

then with nickel and finally with chromium

Hard Chromium Plating is done directly on the base metal and

results in a hardness of up to 70 HRC

This method is used to improve the resistance to wear and

corrosion of tools, valve stems, hydraulic shafts, diesel and
aircraft engine cylinder liners and used to rebuild worn parts

Electroless Plating

Surface Coatings *

Electroless plating is done by chemical reaction and without the

use of an external source of electricity
The most common application utilize nickel and copper

In electroless plating, nickel chloride (a metallic salt) is reduced,

using sodium hypophosphite as the reducing agent to nickel
metal, which is then deposited on the workpiece
The coating has excellent wear and corrosion resistance

Cavities, recesses and the inner surfaces of the tubes can be

plated successfully


Electroless Plating

Surface Coatings *


Electroless Plating

Surface Coatings *

Electroless plating process can also be used with nonconductive

materials, like, plastics and ceramics
Electroless plating is more expensive than electroplating

However the coating thickness of electroless plating is always



Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

Electrochemical machining is one of the newest machining process of

metal removal by controlled dissolution of anode of an electrolytic cell

Reverse of electroplating and is based on Michael Faradays classical
laws of electrolysis

This process is particularly suit to metal and alloys which are difficult

or impossible to machining

An electrolyte acts as a current carrier and high electrolyte movement

in the tool-work-piece gap washes metal ions away from the work
piece (anode) before they have a chance to plate on to the tool
Tool generally made of bronze, copper, brass or stainless steel.
Electrolyte salt solutions like sodium chloride or sodium nitrate
mixed in water.
Power DC supply of 5-25 V.

Electrochemical Processes

Electrochemical Machining (ECM) requiring basically two-electrodes,

an electrolytes, a gap and a source of D C power of sufficient capacity

ECM can be thought of a controlled anodic dissolution at atomic level
of the w/p that is electrically conductive by a shaped tool
Due to flow of high current at relatively low potential difference
through an electrolyte which is quite often water based neutral salt
solution - Reverse of electro-plating (workpiece is anode)

Schematic principle of Electro Chemical Machining (ECM)

Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

In actual process, the cathode tool-shaped, like mirror image of the

finished workpiece and is connected to the anode

The tool is advanced towards the w/p through the electrolyte that
completes the circuit
The metal is then removed from the w/p through electrical action,
and the cathode shape is produced on the w/p
The electrolyte is pumped at high pressure through the gap b/w
the tool & w/p and must be circulated at a high rate to carry heat
The electrolysis process that takes place at the cathode liberates
hydroxyl ions (negatively charged) and free hydrogen
The hydroxyl ions combine with the metal ions of the anode to
form insoluble metal hydroxides and the material is removed from
the anode
This process continues and the cathode (tool) reproduces its shape
in the w/p (anode). The tool does not contact w/p

Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

Electrochemical Drilling

Electrochemical Grinding

Combines electrochemical machining with conventional grinding.

The equipment used is similar to conventional grinder except

that the wheel (bonded with diamond or Al oxide abrasives)

The tool is a rotating cathode wheel with abrasive particles where

abrasives serve as insulator between wheel and work piece.

A flow of electrolyte (sodium nitrate) is provided for

electrochemical machining.

Electrochemical Grinding

Suitable for grinding very hard materials where wheel wear is very
high in traditional grinding process .

Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

An electrolyte is any substance containing free ions that make the

substance electrically conductive. The most typical electrolyte is
an ionic solution, but molten electrolytes and solid electrolytes are
also possible.
Characteristics of Electrolyte
Good electrical conductivity
Non toxicity and chemical stability
Non corrosive property
Low viscosity and high specific heat
Function of electrolyte
Carrying current between tool and work peice
Remove products of machining and other insoluble products from
cutting region
Dissipate heat produced in the operation.

Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

Tool materials for ECM

The general requirements on the tool material in ECM are

It should be conductor of electricity

It should be rigid enough to take up load due to fluid pressure

It should be chemically inert to the electrolyte
It should be easily machinable to make it in the desired shape

Main uses:

- Dies and glass-making molds, turbine and compressor blades,

Holes, Deburring
Due to low forces on tool,
ECM can be used to make
holes at very large angle to
a surface an example is
shown in the turbine nozzle
holes in the figure here.
[source: www.barber-nichols.com]

Electrochemical Machining (ECM)

Advantages of ECM

Tool does not contact w/p producing no heat, no friction and

does not wear and no heat built-up occurs
Process leaves a burr free surface.

Does not cause any thermal damage to the parts.

Lack of tool force prevents distortion of parts.

Capable of machining complex parts and hard materials

ECM systems are now available as Numerically Controlled

machining centers with capability for high production, high
flexibility and high tolerances.

Electric Discharge Machining (EDM)

EDM is based on erosion of metals by spark discharges

EDM system consist of a tool (electrode) and work piece,

connected to a dc power supply and placed in a dielectric fluid

When potential difference between tool and work piece is high, a
transient spark discharges through the fluid, removing a small
amount of metal from the work piece surface
This process is repeated with capacitor discharge rates of 50-500

Electric Discharge Machining (EDM)

A dielectric is an electrical insulator that can be ionized by an

applied electric field.

When a dielectric is placed in an electric field, electric charges do

not flow through the material as they do in a conductor, but only
slightly shift from their average equilibrium positions
causing dielectric polarization.
Dielectric fluid mineral oils, kerosene, distilled and deionized
water etc. Role of the dielectric fluid
1. Acts as a insulator until the potential is sufficiently high.
2. Acts as a flushing medium and carries away the debris.
3. Also acts as a cooling medium.

Electrodes usually made of graphite.

EDM can be used for die cavities, small diameter deep holes,
turbine blades and various intricate shapes.

Electric Discharge Machining (EDM)

Characteristics of dielectric fluid Low viscosity

High fluidity
Controlled level of toxicity
Cheap and easily available

Electric Discharge Machining (EDM)

- Inexpensive, precise, complex shapes

- Workpiece must be a conductor



Characteristics of EDM

The process can be used to machine any work material if it is

electrically conductive & tool has to be electrically conductive as well

Material removal depends on mainly thermal properties of the work
material rather than its strength, hardness etc

iii. In EDM the tool and geometry of the tool is the positive impression of
the hole or geometric feature machined
iv. The tool wear once again depends on the thermal properties of the
tool material

Though the local temperature rise is rather high, still due to very small
pulse time, there is not enough time for the heat to diffuse and thus
almost no increase in bulk temperature takes place. Thus the heat
affected zone is limited to 2 4 m of the spark crater

vi. However rapid heating and cooling and local high temperature leads to
surface hardening which may be desirable in some applications
vii. Though there is a possibility of taper cut and overcut in EDM, they can
be controlled and compensated.

Wire EDM

This process is similar to contour cutting with a band saw.

A slow moving wire travels along a prescribed path, cutting the
work piece with discharge sparks.
Wire should have sufficient tensile strength and fracture
Wire is made of brass, copper or tungsten. (about 0.25 mm in

Wire EDM

Wire-cut EDM

[source: www.magnix.co.kr]

Electric Discharge Machining (EDM)

Electron Beam Welding (EBW)*

Fusion welding process in which heat for welding is provided by

a highly-focused, high-intensity stream of electrons striking work
Electron beam gun operates at: High voltage (e.g., 10 to 150 kV
typical) to accelerate electrons
Beam currents are low (measured in milliamps)

The electron gun melts the parent metal, and the molten metal
flows to fill the gap
Heat affected zone is very narrow

Welds can be several inches deep, and leaves a very clean weld.
Welding must be done in a vacuum.

Electron Beam Welding (EBW)*

Electron Beam Welding (EBW)*

Electron Beam Welding Vacuum Chamber

EBW had to be carried out in a vacuum chamber to minimize

disruption of electron beam by air molecules
Three Vacuum Levels in EBW

High-vacuum welding welding in same vacuum chamber as

beam generation to produce highest quality weld

Medium-vacuum welding welding in separate chamber but

partial vacuum

Non-vacuum welding welding done at or near atmospheric

pressure, with work positioned close to electron beam generator

Electron Beam Welding (EBW)*

EBW Advantages and Disadvantages


High-quality welds, deep and narrow profiles

Limited heat affected zone, low thermal distortion

No flux or shielding gases needed

High equipment cost

Precise joint preparation & alignment required

Vacuum chamber required

Safety concern: EBW generates x-rays

Electron beam machining (EBM)

Similar to LBM except laser beam is replaced by high velocity


When electron beam strikes the work piece surface, heat is

produced and metal is vaporized.
Surface finish achieved is better than LBM.

Used for very accurate cutting of a wide variety of metals.

Electron beam machining (EBM)

Electron Beam Machining (EBM)

Laser Beam Welding (LBW)*

Fusion welding process in which combination is achieved by

energy of a highly concentrated, coherent light beam focused on
LBW normally performed with shielding gases to prevent
Filler metal not usually added

LBW often used for small parts

The heat from laser can be used to heat the surface of material or

penetrate the entire depth of the joint (good for thin gauge

The major problems with the current lasers is the cost and bulk
of the power source.

Laser Beam Welding (LBW)*

A laser beam that becomes highly focused is an excellent source of

concentrated energy.

This energy is used for many welding applications and also

cutting and heat treating.

Two basic types of lasers are used in welding:

Solid-state and
Gas Lasers.

Solid-state lasers are made of a single elongated crystal rod.

Nd:YAG is the most common solid-state laser used for welding.

The most common gas laser is the carbon dioxide laser. It is used
most widely for welding.

Laser Beam Welding (LBW)*

Single pass weld penetration

up to 3/4 in steel


No filler metal required


Low heat input produces low

Does not require a vacuum

CO2 lasers:

Laser Beam Welding (LBW)*

higher power,

better beam quality in terms of focusability,

higher speeds and

deeper penetration for materials that dont reflect its light,

lower start-up and operation costs.

Nd:YAG lasers:

easy beam alignment,

easier maintenance,
smaller equipment,

more expensive safety measures

Laser Beam Welding (LBW)*


Laser Beam Welding (LBW)*

Deep and narrow welds can be done.

Minimal heat affected zones in welds created.

Excellent metallurgical quality will be established in welds.

Ability to weld smaller, thinner components.
Increased travel speeds.
Non-contact welding.

Laser Beam Welding (LBW)


High initial start-up costs

Part fit-up and joint tracking are critical

Not portable

Metals such as copper and aluminium have high reflectivity

and are difficult to laser weld
High cooling rates may lead to materials problems

Laser Beam Welding (LBW)*

Applications Laser Beam Welding (LBW):



Research & development.


Sensors & instrumentation.

Petrochemical refining.

Communications & energy.

Comparison: LBW vs EBW*

No vacuum chamber required for LBW

No x-rays emitted in LBW

Laser beams can be focused and directed by optical lenses and


LBW not capable of the deep welds and high depth-to-width

ratios of EBW
Maximum LBW depth = ~ 19 mm (3/4 in),
Whereas EBW depths = 50 mm (2 in)


machining (LBM)

In LBM laser is focused and the work piece which melts and
evaporates portions of the work piece.

Low reflectivity and thermal conductivity of the work piece

surface, and low specific heat and latent heat of melting and
evaporation increases process efficiency.
Application - holes with depth-to-diameter ratios of 50 to 1 can
be drilled. e.g. bleeder holes for fuel-pump covers, lubrication
holes in transmission hubs.

Laser Beam Machining


Difference between EDM & ECM

Uses dielectric fluid as a conducting

medium between tool and work
Wear of tool takes place during the
Heat is generated during the
Low metal removal rate.
It works on the principle of spark
Metal is removed by melting and
Tools used are oversize for
machining inside surfaces and
undersize for machining outside


Using electrolyte as a conducting

medium between tool and work
No wear of tool during process so
tool life is high.
No heat is generated during the
Metal removal rate is high.
It works on principle of Faradays
law of electrolysis.
electrochemical reaction.
Tool used are of required size of
the work piece.

Difference between Dielectric & Electrolyte


1. It is used as conducting
medium in EDM process.
2. It act as conductor and
insulator both.
3. Tool wear takes place in the
dielectric fluid.
4. It may or may not be
corrosive in nature.



1. It used as conducting
medium in ECM process.
2. It always provide passage for
supply of electricity.
3. The electrolyte selected is
such that there is no wear of
4. It should be non corrosive in


Difference between EBM & LBM




When high velocity electrons 1.

strikes the work piece its
kinetic energy converted into
heat energy.

When excited atoms releases

photons in the form of chain, a
LASER beam is generated which
strikes on w/p & melts it.

Accuracy is good.

Accuracy is comparatively more.

Electron gun is used as a tool.


Metal removal rate is low.



The complete process should 5.

kept in vacuum.
Usually only metals.


LASER material is used as tool.

Metal removal rate is high.

Vacuum is required between

flash lamp and ruby rod.
Any material.

Text Book


Work Shop Technology, Volume II - Machine Tools,


by Hajra