ECM: Better than magic!

The process of machining high-strength materials in combination with small tolerances for large production batches.

Wear-free production through electrochemical machining (ECM)

In contrast to conventional techniques, electrochemical machining (ECM) allows the wear-free machining of high-strength materials. The subsurface areas of the workpiece are furthermore not subjected to any mechanical or thermal stress, and the pulsed electrochemical machining is capable of achieving particularly high levels of geometric complexity and surface quality.

Conventionally, tool design operations are performed manually and require several iterations. Modern tool design strategies, conversely, are often simulation-assisted. Reliable data-based predictions of the electrochemical machining have already paved the way towards new applications of the technology – specifically in aero engine manufacturing, medical technology and tool and die manufacturing.

The Fraunhofer IPT is conducting fundamental research into the removal behaviour of various steel and titanium materials as well as nickel-based alloys under different electrolysis systems and process energy parameters. This allows the application-specific design and engineering of industrial processes. We are already using simulation-assisted tool design strategies and are continuously optimizing these strategies on the basis of newly acquired skills and experiences.

Our Serivces

  • Simulation-assisted cathode design
  • Technology development for DC-ECM and P-ECM
  • Fundamental research into material removal behaviour

Industrial applications

Turbine blades

DC-ECM and P-ECM processes are capable of achieving high removal rates as well as high-quality surfaces. This is why they appear highly suitable for the production of turbine blades.

Drilling holes for engine and tool manufacturing

ECM technologies are capable of drilling holes into all metallic materials, guaranteeing high levels of reproducibility, productivity and wear resistance.