An evaluation of the evolution of workpiece surface integrity in hole making operations for a nickel-based superalloy

C. R.J. Herbert, J. Kwong, M. C. Kong, D. A. Axinte, M. C. Hardy, P. J. Withers

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


White layers and extensive material drag introduced during rough machining are regarded as detrimental to surface integrity. As such a sensible method for determining the amount of material to be removed in a roughing process would be to understand the relationship and interaction between roughing (i.e. drilling) and finishing (i.e. plunge milling) operations. Within this work non-standard cutting parameters were employed during the roughing process to generate a white layer and material drag up to a depth of 20 μm. Various plunge milling cutting strategies followed, with radius removal ranging from 25 μm to 250 μm in order to identify the amount of material removal necessary to eliminate the anomalies previously generated from mistreated surface history. The results show that finishing with a depth of cut between 50 μm and 125 μm removes all anomalies from the roughing process, leaving behind a negligible amount of material drag (3-4 μm). X-ray diffraction demonstrates significant tensile residual stresses (1000-2000 MPa) were generated in the axial and hoop direction by abusive hole drilling while subsequent plunge milling operation leaves compressive surface stresses in the region of -500 MPa in both the axial and hoop directions; in both cases the depth of the surface stresses extended to around 125 μm from the drilled surface. It was also found that a depth of cut of 25 μm was not sufficient to recover the abused surface; this was due to intense material drag accompanied by surface cracking (i.e. 2 μm depth). The research shows that understanding the interaction between successive cutting operations can provide a suitable machining route to fulfil the industrial quality requirements in terms of the machined surface mechanical/metallurgical properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1723-1730
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Materials Processing Technology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Hole making
  • Ni-based superalloys
  • Residual stress
  • Surface integrity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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