Magnetic levitation and rotation for the feasibility of free-form machining
Shih, Alexander H.
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This thesis presents a new transformative manufacturing methodology for free-form machining. An experimental prototype machine is constructed to levitate and rotate an object attached with sharp edges, which act as a cutter for the purpose of performing machining processes. This device aims to lead to a technological breakthrough, overcoming the limitation of the workpiece features, and achieve greater free-form machining capability. The construction of curved holes and interior surfaces are constrained by the geometry of the machine tool. The proposed concept creates a new device that uses a magnetic field generator as a base. It is loaded with a constant power imposing a vertical physical force to balance gravity and stabilize the cutting tool. With the uniqueness of a preferred orientation between the tool and the base, a rotating surface placed below the base permits the rotation of the cutting tool in order to achieve desired tool rotation speed. A smooth and controlled cut is achieved on a soft material. The result shows the feasibility of the device to achieve similar outcomes as a machine tool.