Oxide Layer in the Electrolytic In-Process Dressing

Introduction on ELID

The crushing procedure of molding materials by using hard rough particles as cutting medium has been a noteworthy technique to create exactness mechanical parts (Azarhoushang & Tawakoli, 2011). The technique is used for handling optical and electronic parts. It is utilized as a last machining procedure to create smooth surfaces and the appearance of different sorts of materials, particularly on hard and fragile ceramics. Electrolytic in-process dressing (ELID) grinding, which uses a metal-reinforced granulating wheel, is a strategy for accomplishing a mirror surface appearance on hard and fragile materials (Biswas, 2009).

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The procedure of ELID Grinding has a concurrent electrolytic response and granulating activity. Electrolysis occurs between the anode and cathode wheel. The subsequent anodic oxide wears off effectively to permit proficient grinding. The factors associated with electrolysis complement the component of grinding and make it fundamentally unique from customary grinding. Distinctive variations of the process have been accounted, however, the essential logic of activity is the same as ELID (Wu, Ren, & Zhang, 2015).

Few researchers have recommended numerical clarification, among other basic investigations, that promote knowledge. The fundamental segments of the procedure, machine device, control supply, granulating wheel, terminal points, voltage supply, current, electrode gap, and electrolytes have experienced a few adjustments and advancement to convey better outcomes and suit particular purposes (Wu, Zhang, & Ren, 2015). The procedure has been connected with stock evacuation tasks for hard and fragile materials with low grinding capabilities than regular grinding.

Electrochemical Process of ELID

The essential ELID grinding framework comprises of a metal-fortified granulating wheel, a power supply, and a coolant that has high conductivity (Biswas, Kumar, & Rahman, 2010). The ELID design operates with two cathodes. The metal-fortified wheel is connected as the positive anode, while a copper brush is connected as the negative terminal. The power supply gives electric energy to the cathode and anode terminals. Consequently, the oxide layer produced on the wheel surface decreases the grinding power unlike with the ordinary grinding machines (Islam, Kumar, Balakumar, Lim, & Rahman, 2008).

Technology advancement influence the quest for improved grinding techniques. As a result, individuals have higher necessities for surface precision of optical, electrical and mechanical components (Jamali, & Mills, 2016). In traditional grinding, these components are coupled with lapping issues such as poor surface blend and high device cost. The cost of producing a fine metallic surface with traditions machines depends on the metal. However, the cost of crushing hard material like earthenware production could represent up to 79% of that cost (Kersschot, Qian, & Reynaerts, 2013). The low grinding proficiency, substantial wheel depreciation, and extensive dressing time are fundamental drivers for this high crushing expense (Kuai, 2014).

Application with Manufacturing Optical Components

The machine components of the ELID are hard and fragile materials (Lee & Kim, 2012). The best strategy to produce them is to utilize a crushing procedure in elastic mode, because the smooth surface can be gotten if the material is produced under plastic crushing rather than fracture. The utilization of ELID with super-abrasive wheel makes the flexible mode machining of optical part materials more achievable. Therefore, using the ELID procedure in optical material granulating forms is efficient. The oxide layer decreases the conductivity of the crushing wheel (Lian, Guo, Liu, Huang, & He, 2016). The heavy wheel is pre-dressed during the mechanical process. The surface of the wheel is covered with an oxide layer.

Mechanical Process of the Oxide Layer

It is fundamental for the wheel to be electrically pre-dressed to project the grains on the wheel surface. At the point when pre-dressing begins, the holding material streams from the grinding wheel of the oxidized layer. This protecting layer mitigates the electrical conductivity of the wheel surface and averts extreme flow. As grinding starts, the metal wheel and the oxide layer depreciate. By implication, the conductivity of the wheel surface increases when the electrolytic dressing is in motion (Maegawa, Itoigawa, & Nakamura, 2015). Please note that the fine surface appearance is gotten from the soft nature of the bonding material and the oxide layer. This cycle is rehashed amid the crushing procedure to accomplish the stable grinding process. Keeping in mind the goal to deliver an oxide layer on the metal, the factors include voltage, electrode gap, current, and electrolyte. Because of the electric flow, water begins to deteriorate, while hydrogen is delivered in the cathode and ions charged particles are pulled into the anode terminal. In ELID crushing, it is essential to set a legitimate separation between the granulating wheel surface and the work-piece to guarantee a fine appearance (Nadolny, 2015). Therefore, the electrode gap influences the quality appearance. The oxide layer controls the gap between the electrodes.

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The steps in ELID grinding wheel can be summarized below

Stage 1

Truing is performed on the wheel to diminish the uneven symmetry. As a result, the grinding wheel surface is flatted and symmetrical. It is important to perform ELID pre-dressing, keeping in mind the goal to protrude the cutting material. The pre-dressing is performed at a low speed and takes around 30 minutes. During the pre-dressing step, the rough grains are projected by expelling the metal bond from the wheel surface through electrolysis. If the cast is steel, the material is ionized into Fe2+. The ionized Fe reacts with OH- to produce hydroxides, which change into oxide (Fe2O3), framing a protecting oxide layer on the wheel surface. This protecting layer diminishes the electrical conductivity of the granulating wheel and averts over the top evacuation of the metal bond material (Palmero, 2015). The oxide layer rate diminishes with the decrease in flow speed.

Stage 2

As the ELID grinding starts, the wheel and work-piece association wear off the material bonding. Based on this principle, the electrochemical process begins. The cycle repeats at the same time during the crushing procedure. In this way, the bulge of the grains remains roughly consistent amid the whole crushing process.

Variables that influence the ELID pre-dressing process

Numerous elements could influence the ELID pre-dressing of a granulating wheel. The principal variables include

  1. Power supply, which includes current, and voltage
  2. Electrolytic properties, which include pH, conductivity, metal erosion hindrance
  3. Grinding wheel design, which includes bond materials and super abrasives
  4. Kinematic variables such as crushing wheel speed and rotor angle speed

It is known that all of these elements influence the ELID pre-dressing. There is in reality a single autonomous parameter to describe how much electrical power is provided for electrolysis within a particular time. It is suggested by specialists that a voltage of 90V is appropriate for ELID crushing. Other than the capacities as coolant, grease, flushing medium, the crushing liquid moreover fills in as the electrolyte for ELID.

Crushing wheels are made of numerous sorts of abrasives in different sizes and syntheses fortified in a wide range of bonding materials and arrangements (Yu, Huang, & Xu, 2016). A granulating wheel is made out of grating grains, bond material, and pores, all of which affect the electrolytic dressing process. The kinematic granulating factors include the wheel speed, load rate, and angle speed. Amid the ELID pre-dressing stage, the wheel speed influences the grinding quality of ceramic materials.

The Importance of the Oxide Layer in ELID

The condition of the oxide layer mostly alludes to the thickness and conservatives. Although the oxide layer has insulating properties, the electrolyte flows through its pores, which makes it electrically charged the ELID crushing process. Clearly, the capability of the oxide layer is an extensive impression of the thickness and compression. Whenever the crushing condition, metal bond quality, electrolyte properties are consistent, the oxide layer is identified with the surge current (Pavel, Pavel, & Marinescu, 2004). During the grinding process, the ELID components are energized by the surge current and voltage. The voltage controls the electrolyte, electrodes, and the oxide layer. As a result, the oxide layer alters the electrode gap. By implication, the oxide layer facilitates the gap variation between the cathode and the anode terminal (Ping, Cohen, Dosoretz, & He, 2013). At that point, the difference in its protection caused by the difference in the thickness of the oxide layer can be overlooked.

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The crushing procedure of molding materials by using hard rough particles as cutting medium has been a noteworthy technique to create exactness mechanical parts (Zhang, Ren, Yang, Jin, & Li, 2013). The technique is used for handling optical and electronic parts. It is utilized as a last machining procedure to create smooth surfaces and the appearance of different sorts of materials, particularly on hard and fragile ceramics (Saleh, Bishwas, & Rahman, 2009). Brittle ceramic production has discovered applications that require high temperature, pressure, and perseverance abilities (Pittari, Subhash, & Zheng, 2015). However, the crushing process has concentrated on accomplishing exact geometry and surface cut on hard and fragile materials. For example, silicon wafers, and porcelain products rely on pressure cutting to produce quality materials. Moreover, substantial crushing tasks have been produced to cut and expel materials with proficiently and constrained surface necessities. Accuracy in the cutting of silicon wafers, for creating coordinated circuit chips, utilizes thin grating plates to deliver silicon cuts (Prabhu & Vinayagam, 2013).

Nevertheless, in ceramic and steel crushing, low granulating effectiveness, surface fracture, and quality debasement result in high crushing cost (Venkata & Kalyankar, 2014). One noteworthy technique for an effective granulating process is the planning of the crushing wheel. Machine designers should understand effective procedures for truing and dressing (Zhao, Xue, & Zhao, 2011). Truing refers to the shaping of the cutting wheel surface with the goal that the turning wheel runs valid with less run-out from its perceptible shape. Consequently, pre-dressing is the procedure to condition the crushing wheel surface to accomplish proper molecule projection to accomplish assigned grinding task. The ELID technology was created to encourage the generation rate of crushing procedures with expanding surface quality for handling hard and weak surfaces (Wang, Ma, & Wang, 2011).

Comment on Experimental Results

Researchers have conducted experimental studies to investigate the impact of ELID grinding of fragile materials. Consequently, other studies on factors that include ELID grinding when have been designed. Wang, Ma, and Ning (2012) experimented with vortex current and laser sensor to gauge thickness and development of oxide layers on the grinding wheel surface. As a result, growth analysis of oxide layers was estimated in pre-dressing process. The outcome demonstrates that internal development speed of the oxide layer is more prominent than outward development speed along the circumference of the crushing wheel. The authors concluded that the thickness of oxide layers in ELID grinding process depends on the electrolytes. However, the grinding wheel affects the inward and outward speed of the oxide layer.

Yang, Ren, and Jin (2010) emphasized that the oxide layer influences the granulating proficiency and machining quality in ELID grinding. With a specific goal to investigate and control the thickness of the oxide layer, the authors proposed a high-recurrence power source. It utilizes the superposition of enormous pluses to accomplish periodical electrolysis and to alter oxide layer state. In view of an investigation of current change, the authors designed a pulse indicator to control the state of the oxide layer. The results showed that the new power source could keep a stable granulating process. Consequently, the experiment revealed that the grinding wheel could control the dressing current, which affects the thickness of the oxide layer.

Ma, Zhu, and Stephenson (2006) conducted an experimental research on the thickness of the oxide layer in ELID. The researchers investigated the development of various pre-dressing conditions in ELID wheel, impacts of voltage, current supply, and wheel speed on the oxide layer quality. The results demonstrated that the oxide layer thickness on the wheel surface is significantly proportional to the pre-dressing time. Consequently, the oxide layer rate is higher at the beginning of the ELID process. By implication, the thickness and development rate of the oxide layer is influenced by the proportion of voltage and current supply. The authors emphasized that it takes longer time for oxide layer thickness to reach a stable state in lower voltage as compared with higher current and voltage supply. There are no impacts to wheel speed of oxide layer growth.

Wang, Ren, Chen, Zang and Deng (2018) conducted a comparative study on the state of an oxide layer using the cathode and anode terminals. As a new grinding innovation, the oxide layer assumes an imperative part of ELID process. As a result, the researchers explored the condition of the oxide layer on ELID wheel surfaces using the cathode instrument. Consequently, the authors measured the thickness and structure of the oxide layer during the pre-dressing phase. The granulating power was measured with the workpiece and cathode instrument. As indicated by the researchers, the workpiece instrument showed the gap in the oxide layer. Thus, current flow and voltage facilitated the growth of the oxide layer. By implication, the oxide thickness controlled the surface appearance of the grinding wheel. The researchers also revealed a significant difference between the workpiece and the cathode instrument. The gap was wider with the workpiece than the cathode instrument. This accounts for the change in current and voltage supply during the ELID process. Thus, the outcome provides valid information concerning the ELID grinding process and its performance.

A critique of experiments measuring the thickness of the oxide layer can be expressed using the factors that influence the ELID process. One, the electrochemical behavior of each factor significantly affects the oxide layer during pre-dressing. As a result, current supply negatively affected the oxide layer. The experiments using different electrolytes showed that higher current supply significantly altered the thick layer (Wei, Zhao, Jing, & Liu, 2015). In summary, the experimental findings revealed that the oxide layer thickness, cutting speed, voltage supply, and the depth of the fracture affected the grinding wheel surface.


Azarhoushang, B., & Tawakoli, T. (2011). Development of a novel ultrasonic unit for grinding of ceramic matrix composites. Int J Adv Manuf Technol, 57(9), 945–955.

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