Effect of Process Parameter in Laser Cutting of PMMA Sheet and ANFIS Modelling for Online Control
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603, Malaysia
Laser beam machining (LBM) is a promising and high accuracy machining technology in advanced manufacturing process. In LBM, crucial machining qualities of the end product include heat affected zone, surface roughness, kerf width, thermal stress, taper angle etc. It is essential for industrial applications especially in laser cutting of thermoplastics to acquire output product with minimum kerf width. The kerf width is dependent on laser input parameters such as laser power, cutting speed, standoff distance, assist gas pressure etc. However it is difficult to get a functional relationship due to the high uncertainty among these parameters. Hence, total 81 sets of full factorial experiment were conducted, representing four input parameters with three different levels. The experiments were performed by a continuous wave (CW) CO2 laser with the mode structure of TEM01 named Zech laser machine that can provide maximum laser power up to 500 W. The polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) sheet with thickness of 3.0 mm was used for this experiment. Laser power, cutting speed, standoff distance and assist gas pressure were used as input parameters for the output named kerf width. Standoff distance, laser power, cutting speed and assist gas pressure have the dominant effect on kerf width, respectively, although assist gas has some significant effect to remove the harmful gas. ANFIS model has been developed for online control purposes. This research is considered important and helpful for manufacturing engineers in adjusting and decision making of the process parameters in laser manufacturing industry of PMMA thermoplastics with desired minimum kerf width as well as intricate shape design purposes.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2016
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.