Simultaneous optimization of machine and tool parameters for EDM using WC/Co P/M electrode made with micron and nano sized particles
Multi-response characteristic optimization is the most desired aspect of the components produced from electric discharge machining (EDM). Obtaining the optimal combination of parameters for surface roughness (SR) and micro-hardness (MH) is always a challenging task as the machining parameters favourable to one performance measure adversely affects the other. The present paper deals with the simultaneous optimization of SR and MH of D2 alloy steel during EDM with tungsten carbide (WC)/cobalt (Co) P/M electrode by considering electrode and machine tool parameters. Experimental run order was planned with Taguchi’s orthogonal arrays (OA) and in the present investigation, it is based on L18 OA. The analysis of variance (ANOVA) performed for the grey relational grade (GRG) showed that the tool parameter “particle size” (PS) is the most influential factor (61.43%) for simultaneous improvement of performance measures. The P/M electrode made of fine particle size (i.e., at nano level) has improved the process stability and reduced the arcing and short-circuiting results in reduced surface roughness. Simultaneously, the formation of the hard intermetallic phase’s viz., Fe3C, Cr23C6, W2C, Fe6W6C, and Cr2Fe14C on the EDMed surface has increased the surface hardness. The optimal set of parameters was validated through confirmation experiments.
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