The tool machining performance is mainly influenced by three aspects related to tool materials, tool structure and tool geometry, and the tool material is the key factor which determines the cutting performance and plays a great influence on machining efficiency, machining cost, machining quality and tool life. Different machining applications require different cutting tool materials, and the ideal material should have the basic properties below:
High hardness and abrasive resistance
In order to achieve effective cutting performance, cutting tool material must be harder than the workpiece material. Generally, the more harder the tool material, the better the wear resistance will be, while the wear resistance of tool material is also determined by its chemical composition and the stability of its metallographic structure.
High strength and toughness
In mechanics of materials, the strength of a material refers to its ability to withstand an applied load without failure or plastic deformation.Toughness is the ability of a material to absorb energy and plastically deform without fracturing. In general, hardness increases as toughness decreases, so it is really necessary to choose the proper tool materials as per the machining applications to meet the requirements of production.
High heat resistance
Heat resistance (also named red hardness) is an index to measure the performance of tool materials. It comprehensively reflects the ability of the tool material to maintain hardness, wear resistance, strength, oxidation resistance, adhesion resistance and diffusion resistance at high temperatures.
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