Manufacture of Micropropellers by Means of Ultraprecision Milling Machine
Yoshimi Takeuchi*, Kiyoshi Sawada** and Toshio Sata***
*Dept, of Mechanical and Control Eng. University of Electro-Communications, 1-5-1 Chofugaoka, Chofu, Tokyo 182, Japan
**Basic Research Laboratory, FANUC Ltd., Oshino-mura, Yamanashi 401-05, Japan
***Toyota Technological Institute, Hisakata 2-12-1, Tempaku-ku, Nagoya 479 Japan
The requirement for producing metallic microparts for use in micromachines and/or micromechanisms will continue to increase. This study deals with the manufacturing of tiny parts, of mm-size, using micromachining technology and an ultraprecision milling machine, which consists of a z-motion table, a positionable spindle on it as the c-rotational axis, and an x-motion table. The spindle, which has a pseudo ball end mill composed of a single crystal diamond, is mounted on the x-table. A new manufacturing procedure is devised in order to create a propeller, 3 mm in diameter, as a representative micropart, based on the CAD data of the propeller. As a result, it was found that a functional machined propeller, with a surface roughness of 0.1 μm, can be mounted onto a micromotor shaft, 0.7 mm in diameter.