Safety and productivity enhancement of beryllium (Be) machining using tool vibration monitoring

Period of Performance: 02/14/2005 - 08/14/2005


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Lasson Technologies, Inc.
6059 Bristol Parkway
Culver City, CA 90230
Principal Investigator


In this Phase I SBIR program we will determine the feasibility of using in-process tool vibration sensing for the machining of beryllium parts used in critical missile manufacturing programs. We have developed a noncontact, in-process probe to monitor the vibrations of the cutting tool and/or the workpiece during machining. In-process, on-machine monitoring would allow feedback control of the spindle speed and the metal removal rate. The ultimate goal of this approach is to improve productivity by increasing throughput (while avoiding chatter), improving surface finish and improving dimensional tolerances through better cutter stability. Beryllium and its alloys are frequently employed in aerospace and missile applications where their light weight, favorable thermal properties and high stiffness are required. The main challenge in machining beryllium is controlling the airborne concentration of beryllium particulates, which is toxic to the lungs. One goal of this program is to show a correlation between improved machining productivity and enhanced beryllium safety. In this program we will team with a large beryllium machining company doing work on programs related to GMD. We will also subcontract to the largest domestic company specializing in optimization of tool dynamics during machining.