Machine Tool Use Phase Modeling and Analysis with Environmental Considerations

This thesis is motivated from the fundamental decision problem in today's manufacturing industry which could be summarized as one simple question: how is it possible to achieve economic growth by taking advantage of the latest technologies while protecting the environment? The machine tool has undergone a remarkable change in recent years and the classical concept of an independent, manually operated machine tool, specially dedicated to a particular machining process no longer belongs to the production environment. The increasing usage of computer control and measuring equipment as well as workpiece and tool handling devices has transformed the machine tool into a sophisticated hybrid production system having a lower demand for human supervision of the process. All these efforts are gathered together in order to achieve a high productivity system able to machine different parts respecting quality requirements at the lowest cost. In addition, increasing attention to the environmental and health impacts by governmental regulations and by growing awareness in society is forcing manufacturers to find environmentally friendly designs and machining strategies. The objective of this research is to propose a multicriteria decision aid methodology (MCDA) for evaluation of the use phase of a machine tool system by jointly considering economical, technical and environmental criteria which allows the decision maker to be in a better position to make sustainable decisions. The evaluation is carried out at two levels by addressing the process level with its local cutting area effects and the main activities of the machine tool system by giving full consideration to reduction/elimination of the cutting fluid and reduction of the overall energy consumption. After carefully reviewing previous research, a consistent hierarchical evaluation criteria structure and an entity relationship diagram characterizing the organizational scheme of a database, which stores the data to be used in the evaluation process, is proposed for each level. As a second step, this thesis proposes a model for estimation of the mechanical energy requirements of the cutting subsystem of a machine tool based on the cutter location data, the cutting parameters and the technical specifications of the spindle and feed axes. The MCDA methodology and the energy consumption model were implemented in a software tool using the VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) language and was validated through various tests consisting in the machining of different milling and drilling features of a prismatic part by employing different cutting parameters and cooling/lubrication alternatives. In addition to the cutting tests, an extensive monitoring of the power share amongst the main subsystems of a modern machining center was carried out and a power data collection framework was proposed. The acquisition, interpretation and storage of the experimental data were supported by a measurement platform developed in the LabVIEW environment.

Xirouchakis, Paul
Lausanne, EPFL
Other identifiers:
urn: urn:nbn:ch:bel-epfl-thesis4704-1

Note: The status of this file is: EPFL only

 Record created 2010-04-01, last modified 2018-01-28

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