Ramasawmy, H. and Blunt, Liam (2002) 3D surface topography assessment of the effect of different electrolytes during electrochemical polishing of EDM surfaces. International Journal of Machine Tools and Manufacture, 42 (5). pp. 567-574. ISSN 0890-6955

In many countries the most common polishing practice in die making is to hand polish the part as a finishing operation after the electro discharge machining process (EDM). The usual polishing abrasives are silicon carbide paper and diamond paste of different grit sizes.

However, during the last decade researchers especially in Japan and the USA have tried to combine EDM and electrochemical machining (ECM) in one machine so as to use the positive aspects of each individual process. The ECM process uses high density, typically 50 A/cm2, and also a pulse current with a servo-controlled electrode. These investigators have mostly used sodium nitrate solutions (of different concentrations) as the electrolyte.

This paper deals with an experiment that was undertaken in order to assess the effect of four different electrolytes in an electrochemical polishing process (ECP) on the surface topography of EDM surfaces. The primary set of 3D surface parameters was used as a basis to characterise the surface produced by the combined processes in different electrolytic media