If positioning accuracies below one micrometer are required multi-piece hinges are insufficient. Newer concepts like flexure hinges allow to increase the accuracy of the movement significantly. Due to their monolithic and filigree composition the manufacture is a great challenge for conventional manufacturing techniques. Only the nearly force-free Wire-EDM process is able to produce such weak structures without destroying them. But the process inherent thermal induced rim zone alteration might influence the mechanical behavior. This situation requires a fundamental research on the correlation between the W-EDM process and the mechanical characteristics of a flexure hinge.
Within the framework of the project funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG), the influence of the manufacturing process on the mechanical functionality of flexure hinges is investigated. For this purpose, the parameters of the rim zones generated by the W-EDM were characterized in the first step together with the project partners. In a second step these analyzes are used to correlate the achieved durability of the flexure hinges with the white layer alteration. The resulting test and analysis results are finally used to develop a prediction model for the flexure hinge behavior. On the basis of the machining conditions this is intended to predict for example the durability of the hinge.
• Effect analysis of W-EDM.
• Analysis of rim zone.
• Fatigue tests of EDMed surfaces.
• Predicting the functional behaviour of W-EDMed workpieces.
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