Supervisors: Associate Professor James Wang, Dr Rosalie Hocking, Associate Professor Scott Wade (Swinburne)
Thesis title: Edge Preparation, Surface Finish, and Their Effects on Modern Precision Cutting Tool Performance
Thesis synopsis: Cutting tools play a crucial role in today’s cutting-edge technology. Edge preparation and surface finish are of critical importance in modern precision cutting tools. The primary motivations for edge preparation and surface finish are to enhance edge strength by eliminating surface defects and irregularities, generating a defined geometry in the contour of the cutting edge in the form of rounding radius or chamfer or their combination, and modifying the surface finish of the edge and structuring of the rake and flank faces of the cutting tool, and therefore, to improve cutting tool life and coatability, and to guarantee consistent tool performance. In this project, various edge preparation techniques, such as drag finishing with granulate, and micro-abrasive jet machining, and a novel electro polishing and honing process, are used to generate consistent edge geometry for different types of cutting tool materials. The prepared cutting edge contours will be characterised using a wide array of microscopy and spectroscopy to determine geometry of cutting edge contour, surface finish, and the structuring of the cutting surfaces of the tools, and define the quality characteristics of the cutting edge. A protocol that uses the optimum process parameters to achieve optimal surface quality of the cutting edge will be developed. The effect of prepared cutting edges on the quality of wear resistant coatings (TiN, TiC, Ti(C,N), (Ti, Al)N, or Al2O3) and cutting tool performance in terms of cutting force and tool life will be investigated in industrial machining environments.
Minh Nhat Dang completed a Bachelor of Science in Advanced Materials Science and Nanotechnology, with 2nd rank in his class from the Vietnam–France University, Vietnam (2016). He was later awarded a fellowship to Boston funded by the Dream Project Incubators organisation, where he learnt the motivation from prominent scholars at Harvard, MIT and other institutions. Upon graduation, he worked as a Junior Researcher at the Institute of Materials Science, and then Laboratory Manager at the Centre for High Technology Development, Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology, Vietnam. Being a principal investigator and key member in national and private projects, Minh has vast experience in the synthesis of nanomaterials ranging from gold, transition metal dichalcogenides, metal-organic framework, concrete to carbonaceous composites applied for environmental treatment, infra-construction and energy. With his passion for carbon nanomaterials, Minh dedicated his time mostly to develop simple and green methodologies for a scalable production of carbon nanotubes, graphene and graphene-based materials. Some of his works, such as the plasma-enhanced electrochemical exfoliation process and microwave-assisted liquid exfoliation process, have been patented and published.