The Finish Machining of Additively Manufactured (AM) Nickel Super-alloy Components.

Lead Research Organisation: University of Bath
Department Name: Mechanical Engineering


Nickel-based super alloys are advanced materials which can withstand high temperatures. They are extensively used in high-temperature applications such as in jet engines and oil&gas applications. The material properties which makes nickel super alloys ideal for specific applications are also responsible for difficulties in manufacturing processes. Machining nickel super alloys is associated with poor tool life, high costs and low productivity. In addition, machining can damage the surface integrity and material structure of the parts. This project investigates the

This project identifies the key grades of Nickel Super-alloys and investigates their machining requirements. This includes developing the material model for machining simulation, simulation of machining processes, investigating the material cutting mechanism and analysing chip formation. Metallurgic methods will be used to analyse the material structure of nickel alloys. Using high strain rate impact tests, the material model for machining simulation will be developed. The material model will be used for generating computational finite element models of cutting for nickel based super alloys. The models will be validated experimentally. This project involves developing rigs and methods for testing and validating of machining simulation models. The data generated from these investigations will be used to design, manufacture and optimise cutting tool geometry, machining environment and cutting temperature for machining these alloys in order to maximise machinability of nickel based super alloys.

Additive manufacturing (AM) has revolutionised how parts are designed and manufactured. However, there are key remaining issues making a barrier for full adoption of AM at industrial scale. Finishing of the AM parts is one of these major issues. The knowledge generated on machining of nickel super alloys will be extended to investigate and develop solutions for finish machining of AM nickel based super alloys.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/S513738/1 30/09/2018 29/09/2023
2277795 Studentship EP/S513738/1 30/09/2019 29/09/2023 Joseph BETTS