Mechanistic modeling of the ball end milling process for multi-axis machining of free-form surfaces

Rixin Zhu, Shiv G. Kapoor, Richard E. DeVor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A mechanistic modeling approach to predicting cutting forces is developed for multi-axis ball end milling of free-form surfaces. The workpiece surface is represented by discretized point vectors. The modeling approach employs the cutting edge profile in either analytical or measured form. The engaged cut geometry is determined by classification of the elemental cutting point positions with respect to the workpiece surface. The chip load model determines the undeformed chip thickness distribution along the cutting edges with consideration of various process faults. Given a 5-axis tool path in a cutter location file, shape driving profiles are generated and piecewise ruled surfaces are used to construct the tool swept envelope. The tool swept envelope is then used to update the workpiece surface geometry employing the Z-map method. A series of 3-axis and 5-axis surface machining tests on Ti6A14V were conducted to validate the model. The model shows good computational efficiency, and the force predictions are found in good agreement with the measured data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)369-379
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering, Transactions of the ASME
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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