ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Manufacturing Processes - ECM Electrochemical Machining Process

Updated on November 15, 2011

ECM & ECDM Electrochemical Machining

Micromachining Using Electrochemical Discharge Phenomenon: Fundamentals and Application of Spark Assisted Chemical Engraving (Micro and Nano Technologies)
Micromachining Using Electrochemical Discharge Phenomenon: Fundamentals and Application of Spark Assisted Chemical Engraving (Micro and Nano Technologies)

This book presents an unconventional and largely unknown technology, which is able to micro-machine at relatively low cost glass, polymers and other materials. This process is called Spark Assisted Chemical Engraving (SACE), or Electro Chemical Discharge Machining (ECDM).

 

Electrochemical Machining ECM

Electrochemical Machining fits in the category of machining as a manufacturing process. It involves removal of material from a workpiece using electrolysis. This is achieved by connecting the workpiece and the electrode to an electrical power supply. Similar to electrical discharge machining the material for this process to work has to be electrically conductive, but unlike electrical discharge machining the workpiece and electrode are immersed in an electrolyte fluid as opposed to a dielectric fluid.

Electrochemical Machining Advantages

The main advantage of electrochemical machining is that it can be used to machine extremely hard materials with no stressing. This is due to the absence of physical contact and heat. You will notice that there are many similarities between electrochemical machining ECM and electrical discharge machining EDM and consequently the advantages for both are also very similar, but ECM does have some distinct advantages over EDM.

Advantages over EDM

  • thin section and fragile parts can be machined (no stress involved)
  • its faster than EDM
  • There is no tool wear with ECM,
  • There is no heat involved
  • Tool can be made from soft electrode materials such as copper which is very easy to machine

Electrochemical Machining Disadvantages

The main disadvantage of electrochemical machining is that the process is not particularly environmentally friendly. Not only is it a high energy process but it also produces a chemical sludge that needs to be disposed of. In addition to that the equipment used has a tendency to become corroded so requires frequent maintenance.

In terms of cost, equipment is also more expensive than standard machinery and equipment.

Electrochemical Machining Process

The process involves removing any electrically conductive material using anodic dissolution of the workpiece in a stream of electrolyte. The electrolyte separates the workpiece which is the positive anode side (+ve) from the tool electrode which is the negative cathode (-ve) side. The feed rate of the tool is then matched to the dissolution rate of the workpiece with removal rate being governed by Faraday's law which in practice means it is limited by the current and the electrolyte used. Features machined into the workpiece are a mirror image of the tool and the quality of the machined finish is inversely proportional to the rate of material removal.

Because there is no tool wear whatsoever, the tool can be made to any required shape out of a soft material such as copper.

It is common practice to load several electrodes into one tool holder in order to machine complex components with multiple cavities. The process can be duplicated very easily due to the fact there is no tool wear. It is a simple case of changing out the workpiece and running the program again. However compared to standard machining the cycle times would be considered quite long, but this is somewhat offset by the faster setting up times involved and the lack of tool wear.


ECM Electrochemical Machining

Comments on Electrochemical Machining ECM

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)