High-performance machining of aluminium structural parts

In the aerospace industry, high-volume cutting of aluminium structural parts is of major importance. Frame elements or wing parts are generally milled from solid material, and often more than 90% of the raw part is cut away. The tools and machines used therefore must have a reliable and high performance level to avoid scrap and keep the machining times as short as possible.

The new high-performance milling cutters OptiMill-SPM can be used with unmatched feed rates.
The new high-performance milling cutters OptiMill-SPM can be used with unmatched feed rates.

With the new high-performance milling tools OptiMill-SPM MAPAL presents a highly efficient tool solution of roughing aluminium structural parts. One important feature is the cutting edge length that corresponds to approx. 60% of the diameter, allowing the maximum contact depth for the high-performance milling of aluminium to be exploited. The PCD blades are optimally embedded and ensure a high stability. Thanks to the high positive cutting edge geometry and the optimised chip spaces, the cutting force of PCD milling cutters is reduced by up to 15%. The conical design also contributes to the high performance level of the tools. It prevents ending of the tool during the machining process and scratching of the part wall caused by chips.

The new OptiMill-SPM milling cutters are very successfully used in practice. A milling cutter ø 32 mm with three cutting edges machines a frame element from AlZnMgCu 1,5 with a spindle speed of 28,000 rpm. The tool delivers optimum results with feed speeds of 16,800 mm/min and a cutting depth of 12 mm. The machining parameters were increased even further in a high-pressure test conducted in the testing centre at MAPAL. The milling cutter showed an optimum performance even at a feed speed of 22,000 mm/min. The material removal rate even exceeded 8 l/min in this case.

The OptiMill-SPM tools are available in the diameter range from 6 to 50 mm, both as PCD and solid carbide variants in the standard range. The product portfolio also includes variants with the CFS replaceable head system.