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Design and development of next generation textured cutting tools for improved tribological properties during machining

   Cardiff School of Engineering

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  Dr D Bhaduri, Dr E Brousseau, Dr S Bigot  Applications accepted all year round  Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

Surface texturing/structuring has witnessed a substantial progress over the past decades as it is seen as a viable option for surface engineering, resulting in significant improvements in load capacity, wear resistance and friction coefficient of tribo-mechanical parts, thereby contributing to the development of sustainable manufacturing and surface functionalisation of components. Various techniques of surface texturing have been developed over the years including additive and subtractive methods such as abrasive machining, reactive ion etching, electron beam and electro discharge texturing. In comparison to other subtractive material processing technologies, laser surface texturing (LST) has attracted considerable interest over the past ~20 years due to its superior flexibility, selectivity, accuracy, efficiency and capability for producing tailor-made surfaces with varying wettability, adhesion and friction properties.

The broad aim of this project is to investigate the effectiveness of LST primarily in dry machining. Dry machining with textured cutting tools has enormous prospects in sustainable design and manufacturing as it can replace the use of environmentally hazardous cutting fluids. However, it is imperative to identify the texture designs, i.e. LST patterns, and subsequently validate them in order to maximise their functional effects.

There has been a comprehensive study on the application of LST in improving the tribological performance of friction units. Attempt has also been made to optimise the LST process parameters to benefit from textured surfaces under different lubrication regimes. Although various designs and optimisation of LST patterns have been investigated, the process design methods are still dominated by ‘trial and error’ approaches, and yet there are large variations in ‘optimum’ designs obtained by different research groups. There is also substantial scope and potential for investigating the effects of laser surface structuring/texturing on cutting tools when machining advanced aerospace alloys and correlating the machining behaviour/responses with the tribological properties of the laser treated surfaces.

The following objectives will be undertaken in the project:

i. First, some of the previous research work on textured cutting tools will be replicated in order to verify the concept;

ii. Design and optimisation of the textured patterns as well as the laser processing parameters suitable for producing them;

iii. Evaluation of the tribological properties of the laser treated specimens;

iv. Testing of the machining performance of the laser textured cutting tools.

Candidates should hold a good bachelor’s degree (first or upper second-class honours degree) or a MSc degree in a relevant engineering/science subject.

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in the English language (IELTS 6.5 or equivalent)

For further information please contact Dr Debajyoti Bhaduri ([Email Address Removed])  

Applicants should submit an application for postgraduate study via the Cardiff University  webpages ( ) including;

·        an upload of your CV

·        a personal statement/covering letter

·        two references (applicants are recommended to have a third academic referee, if the two academic referees are within the same department/school)

·        Current academic transcripts

Applicants should select Doctor of Philosophy (Engineering), with a start date of

PLEASE CHOOSE - 1st April 2021, 1st July 2021 or 1st October 2021.

In the research proposal section of your application, please specify the project title and supervisors of this project and copy the project description in the text box provided. In the funding section, please specify that you are applying for the advertised  self funded project reference DB2-SF-2021

Application deadline 30th September 2021 - We may however close this opportunity earlier if a suitable candidate is identified.

Funding Notes

Open to self funded students worldwide

Open days

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