Machinability of surfaces via motion analysis

Robert J Cripps, Ben Cross, Glen Mullineux, Mat Hunt

Research output: Chapter or section in a book/report/conference proceedingChapter in a published conference proceeding

1 Citation (SciVal)


The machinability of a surface describes its ability to be machined and the factors which affect this. These are independent of any material properties or cutting parameters but instead reflect an ability to replicate a desired tool path motion with sufficient control of the material removal process. Without this control there is a potential for surface defects and costly finishing stages. Five-axis CNC milling machines are commonly used for machining complex free-form shapes. The processes required to obtain CNC instructions for a machine tool, starting from a target surface, are presented. An overview is first given and later formalised with mathematical methods. Specifically, a moving cutting tool is characterised by a tool path motion. Interpreting the moving cutter in terms of moving machine axes provides a diagnostic tool for detecting machining errors. Examination of two case studies reveals different types of errors, machine-dependent and machine-independent. The contribution of geometry to machine-independent errors is discussed and related back to the machinability of a surface.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMathematical Methods for Curves and Surfaces - 9th International Conference, MMCS 2016, Revised Selected Papers
EditorsMichael Floater, Tom Lyche, Marie-Laurence Mazure, Knut Morken, Larry L. Schumaker
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages22
VolumeLNCS 10521
ISBN (Print)9783319678849
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event9th International Conference on Mathematical Methods for Curves and Surfaces, MMCS 2016 - Tonsberg, Norway
Duration: 23 Jun 201628 Jun 2016

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)


Conference9th International Conference on Mathematical Methods for Curves and Surfaces, MMCS 2016


  • Five-axis machine tool
  • Machinability
  • Tool path motion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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