Inderscience Publishers

Limits and challenges of manufacturing micro moulds

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Due to the ongoing miniaturisation in industrial sectors like automotive, electronics or medical, the development of new manufacturing processes which are suitable for micro system technologies gains more and more importance. The miniaturisation of components leads to challenges in the manufacturing of micro parts. One application area is the manufacturing of moulds for the micro powder injection moulding (μPIM) process. This process requires good surface qualities and a sufficient demoulding behaviour of the moulds. Micro milling, micro electrical discharge machining (μEDM) and micro laser beam machining (μLBM) are appropriate processes for the manufacturing of micro structures in different materials. Abrasive micro peening can be used for further precision treatment. Depending on the desired structure a single process or the combination of several processes has to be chosen to obtain superior surface qualities of the moulds. This paper deals with challenges and limits of the manufacturing processes among others exemplified on a gearwheel mould.

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