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Int J Adv Manuf Technol (2008) 37:250255

DOI 10.1007/s00170-007-0981-4

ORIGINAL ARTICLE

Multi response optimization of machining parameters


of drilling Al/SiC metal matrix composite using grey
relational analysis in the Taguchi method
A. Noorul Haq & P. Marimuthu & R. Jeyapaul

Received: 12 December 2006 / Accepted: 12 February 2007 / Published online: 10 March 2007
# Springer-Verlag London Limited 2007

Abstract This paper presents a new approach for the


optimization of drilling parameters on drilling Al/SiC metal
matrix composite with multiple responses based on orthogonal array with grey relational analysis. Experiments are
conducted on LM25-based aluminium alloy reinforced with
green bonded silicon carbide of size 25 m (10% volume
fraction). Drilling tests are carried out using TiN coated
HSS twist drills of 10 mm diameter under dry condition. In
this study, drilling parameters namely cutting speed, feed
and point angle are optimized with the considerations of
multi responses such as surface roughness, cutting force
and torque. A grey relational grade is obtained from the
grey analysis. Based on the grey relational grade, optimum
levels of parameters have been identified and significant
contribution of parameters is determined by ANOVA.
Confirmation test is conducted to validate the test result.
Experimental results have shown that the responses in
drilling process can be improved effectively through the
new approach.
Keywords Drilling . Al/SiC metal matrix composite .
Orthogonal array . Grey relational analysis .
ANOVA . Optimization
A. N. Haq (*) : R. Jeyapaul
Department of Production Engineering,
National Institute of Technology,
Tiruchirappalli 620 015, India
e-mail: anhaq@nitt.edu
R. Jeyapaul
e-mail: jeyapaul@nitt.edu
P. Marimuthu
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Sona College of Technology,
Salem 636 005, India
e-mail: pmarimuthu69@gmail.com

1 Introduction
Metal matrix composites (MMC) are materials which
combine tough metallic matrix with a hard ceramic
reinforcement with superior properties like high strength
to wear ratio, high modulus, superior wear resistance and
corrosion resistance. These materials are widely used in
various fields like aerospace, automotive, electronics and
metallic industries and are very difficult to machine
material due to the presence of hard ceramic particle [15].
Most of the researches on the machining of Al/SiC
MMC have focused on turning and facing while drilling has
received less attention. Davim [1] investigated the study of
drilling metal matrix composites of type A356/20% SiC-T6
based on the Taguchi technique with the objective of
establishing the correlations between cutting velocity, feed
rate and cutting time with the evaluation of tool wear, the
specific cutting pressure and the hole surface roughness
using PCD drill. Tosun et al. [2, 3] investigated the effect of
the various cutting parameters on the surface quality and
microstructure on drilling of Al/17% SiC particulate MMC
by using various drills. They have suggested that TiN
coated HSS drills can be used for drilling Al/SiC-MMC
rather than solid carbide tools. The quality of the drilled
part is greatly influenced by the cutting conditions, tool
geometry, tool material, machining process, chip formation,
work piece material, tool wear, vibration during cutting, etc.
Thus in material removal processes, improper selection of
cutting conditions will result in rough surfaces [6].
Moreover, it is necessary to optimize the cutting parameters
to obtain an extended tool life and better productivity,
which are influenced by cutting force and torque [7].
Bhattacharyya [8] used the Lagrangian function method
in searching for optimum cutting parameters. Ermer [9]
used the geometric programming method. Lin [10] inves-

Int J Adv Manuf Technol (2008) 37:250255

tigated the tool life, surface roughness and burr formation


in high speed drilling of stainless steel using TiN-coated
carbide drill. Mohan et al. [11] studied the influence of
process parameters on cutting force and torque during
drilling of glass-fiber polyester reinforced composite using
Taguchi technique with the objective of minimization of
cutting force and torque. Tosun [12] used the grey relational
analysis for the determination of optimal drilling parameters
with the objective of minimization of surface roughness and
burr height. Lin et al. [13] used the grey relational analysis
method for optimization of the EDM process. Most of the
applications of Taguchi method concentrate on the optimization of single response problems [15].
The grey relational analysis based on grey system theory
can be used for solving the complicated interrelationships
among the multi responses [14, 15]. A gray relational grade
is obtained to evaluate the multiple responses. As a result,
optimization of the multiple responses can be converted
into optimization of a single relational grade. In short, there
is an ample scope of applying the proposed methodology of
grey relational analysis and Taguchi method with the
multiple responses for the optimization of drilling parameters of Al/SiC MMC using the economic tool of TiNcoated HSS twist drill.
In the present study, experimental details using the
Taguchi method of parameter design have been employed
for optimizing multiple performance characteristics such as
surface roughness, cutting force and torque for drilling of
Al/SiC-MMC. Grey relational analysis has been considered
for optimization of multiple response characteristics. Finally analysis of variance (ANOVA) and confirmation test
have been conducted to validate the test result.

251

cutting point angles (90, 115 and 140 degrees), coated by TiN
are used throughout the experimental work.
The average surface roughness (Ra), cutting force (Fc)
and torque (T) are considered as responses for this study. The
surface roughness is measured at three positions spaced at
120 intervals around the hole circumference. The surface
roughness of each hole is taken as the mean of three
circumferential readings. The cutting force and torque for
each trial is measured by using strain gauge dynamometer.
2.2 Plan of investigation
The factors and their levels considered in this study are
shown in Table 1. Experiments are conducted with three
factors each at three levels and hence a three level
orthogonal array (OA) is chosen. Degrees of freedom
(Dof) required for the design are six. The OA, which
satisfies the required Dof is L9. The experiments are
conducted using L9 OA and the response values obtained
are given in Table 2.

3 Optimization steps using grey relational analysis


Step 1 Calculate S/N ratio for the corresponding responses
using the following formula.
i Larger - the - better
S=N ratio 10 log10

 X
1 n 1
n i1 y2ij

2 Experimental works

where n=number of replications yij =observed response


value where i=1, 2, ....n; j=1, 2...k
This is applied for problem where maximization of the
quality characteristic of interest is sought. This is referred
as the larger-the-better type problem.

2.1 Description of experimental setup and measurements

ii Smaller - the - better

In this work, LM 25-based aluminium alloy(Cu: 7.15%,


Mg: 0.49%, Mn: 0.11%, Fe: 0.47%, Ni: 0.002%, Ti:
0.064%, Zn: 0.017%, Pb: 0.003%, Sn: 0.005%) reinforced
with green bonded silicon carbide particle of size 25 m
with 10% volume fractions manufactured through stir
casting route is used for experimentation.
The drilling tests are carried out on radial drilling machine
under dry condition. In order to conduct experiments, the
work materials are cut into plates of 1505020 mm and
faced in a lathe to obtain flat surface. Then the plate is fastened
to the rigid fixture attached to the strain gauge dynamometer
which is mounted on the table. Equal spacing is maintained
between successive drilled holes in the plate. The cutting point
of a standard HSS twist drills of 10 mm diameter with various

S=N ratio 10log10

n
1X
y2
n i1 ij

!
2

This is termed as the smaller-the-better type problem


where minimization of the characteristic is intended.

Table 1 Factors and levels


Parameters

Cutting speed (V)


Feed (F)
Point angle (PA)

Unit

m/min
mm/rev
degree

Levels
1

35.18
0.050
90

56.54
0.125
115

87.96
0.20
140

252

Int J Adv Manuf Technol (2008) 37:250255

Table 2 L9 Orthogonal array with factors and responses


Trial No.

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

1
1
1
2
2
2
3
3
3

1
2
3
1
2
3
1
2
3

PA

Normalization is a transformation performed on a single


data input to distribute the data evenly and scale it into an
acceptable range for further analysis.

Responses

1
2
3
2
3
1
3
1
2

Ra in m

Fc in N

T in Nm

7.83
4.01
2.22
6.70
5.80
6.09
6.01
8.27
6.20

107.87
254.96
470.67
186.31
539.33
1186.53
274.57
1078.66
1274.78

0.88
2.06
2.26
1.96
1.28
3.24
0.69
2.55
2.16

iii Nominal - the - best



S=N ratio 10 log10

Where

2
2


3

Step 2 yij is normalized as Zij (0Zij 1) by the following


formula to avoid the effect of adopting different units and to
reduce the variability. It is necessary to normalize the
original data before analyzing them with the grey relation
theory or any other methodologies. An appropriate value is
deducted from the values in the same array to make the
value of this array approximate to 1. Since the process of
normalization affects the rank, we also analyzed the
sensitivity of the normalization process on the sequencing
results. Thus, we recommend that the S/N ratio value be
adopted when normalizing data in grey relation analysis.


yij  min yij ; i 1; 2; :::::n




Zij
max yij ; i 1; 2; ::::::n  min yij ; i 1; 2; :::::n
4

y1y2y3:::::::yn
n
P
yiy2

(To be used for S/N ratio with Larger the better manner)


max yij ; i 1; 2; :::::n  yij




Zij
max yij ; i 1; 2; ::::::n  min yij ; i 1; 2; :::::n

n1

This is called nominal-the-best type of problem where


one tries to minimize the mean squared error around a
specific target value. Adjusting the mean on target by any
means renders the problem to a constrained optimization
problem.

5
(To be used for S/N ratio with smaller the better manner)






yij  Target  min yij  Target; i 1; 2; ::::::n








Zij
max yij  Target; i 1; 2; :::::n  min yij  Target; i 1; 2; ::::::n

(To be used for S/N ratio with nominal the best manner)
Step 3 Calculate the grey relational co-efficient for the
normalized S/N ratio values.
yo k ; yi k

min max
oj k max

where
1. j=1,2...n; k=1,2...m, n is the number of experimental
data items and m is the number of responses.
2. yo(k) is the reference sequence (yo(k)=1, k=1,2...m);
yj(k) is the specific comparison
sequence.

3. oj yo k  yj k The absolute value of the
difference between
 yo(k) and yj(k)

4. min min minyo k  yj k is the smallest value
8j2i 8k
of yj(k)


5. max max maxyo k  yj k is the largest value
8j2i 8k
of yj(k)

6. K is the distinguishing coefficient, which is defined in


the range 0K1 (the value may adjusted based on the
practical needs of the system)
Step 4 Generate the grey relational grade.
gj

m
1X
g
k i1 ij

where g j is the grey relational grade for the jth experiment


and k is the number of performance characteristics.
Step 5 Determine the optimal factor and its level
combination.
The higher grey relational grade implies the better
product quality; therefore, on the basis of grey relational
grade, the factor effect can be estimated and the optimal
level for each controllable factor can also be determined.

Int J Adv Manuf Technol (2008) 37:250255

253

For example, to estimate the effect of factor i, we calculate


the average of grade values (AGV) for each level j, denoted
as AGVij, then the effect, Ei, is defined as:




Ei max AGVij  min AGVij
9

the optimal level of the design parameters can be calculated


as the following:

If the factor i is controllable, the best level j*, is determined


by


10
j maxj AGVij

m Average SN ratio

b
m

q
X

i  m

i1

11

Average SN ratio corresponding to ith


significant factor on jth level
q Number of significant factors

Step 6 Perform ANOVA for identifying the significant


factors.
The main purpose of the analysis of variance (ANOVA)
is the application of a statistical method to identify the
effect of individual factors. Results from ANOVA can
determine very clearly the impact of each factor on the
process results. The Taguchi experimental method could
not judge the effect of individual parameters on the entire
process; thus, the percentage of contribution using ANOVA
is used to compensate for this effect. The total sum of the
squared deviations SST is decomposed into two sources: the
sum of the squared deviations due to each process
parameter and the sum of the squared error. The percentage
contribution by each of the process parameter in the total
sum of the squared deviations SST can be used to evaluate
the importance of the process-parameter change on the
performance characteristics. Usually, the change of the
process parameter has a significant effect on the performance characteristic when the F value is large.
Step 7 Calculate the predicted optimum condition.
Once the optimal level of the design parameters has been
selected, the final step is to predict and verify the quality
characteristic using the optimal level of the design
parameters. Here we have used the factor levels obtained
by using Eqs. (9) and (10). The estimated S/N ratio using

4 Implementation of the solution methodology


Step 1 Calculate the S/N ratios for a given response and
predicted S/N ratios of the starting conditions using one of
the Eqs. (1), (2) and (3) depending upon the type of quality
characteristics. The computed S/N ratios for each quality
characteristic are shown in Table 3.
Step 2 Normalize the S/N ratio values by Eqs. (4), (5) and
(6). The results are given in Table 3.
Step 3 Perform the grey relational analysis. From the data
in Table 3, calculate the grey relational co-efficient for the
normalized S/N ratio values by using Eq. (7). The value for
max is taken as 0.5 in Eq. (7). Since all the process
parameters are of equal weighting [12]. The results are
given in Table 4.
Step 4 Next, the grey relational grade can be computed by
Eq. (8). Finally, the grades are considered for optimizing
the multi response parameter design problem. The results
are given in the Table 4.

Table 3 S/N ratio values and normalized S/N ratio values


Trial No.

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

S/N ratios

Normalized values of S/N ratios Zij

Ra

Fc

Ra

Fc

17.875
12.063
6.927
16.521
15.269
15.692
15.577
18.350
15.848

40.658
48.129
53.454
45.405
54.637
61.486
48.773
60.658
62.109

1.110
6.277
7.082
5.845
2.144
10.211
3.223
8.131
6.689

0.958
0.450
0.000
0.840
0.730
0.767
0.757
1.000
0.781

0.000
0.348
0.597
0.221
0.652
0.971
0.378
0.932
1.000

0.157
0.707
0.767
0.675
0.400
1.000
0.000
0.845
0.738

254

Int J Adv Manuf Technol (2008) 37:250255

Table 4 Grey relational co-efficient and grey grade values


Trial No.

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

Grey relational co-efficient

Grey grade

Ra

Fc

0.923
0.476
0.333
0.757
0.650
0.682
0.673
1.000
0.695

0.333
0.434
0.553
0.391
0.589
0.945
0.446
0.881
1.000

0.372
0.631
0.682
0.606
0.454
1.000
0.333
0.764
0.656

0.543
0.514
0.523
0.585
0.564
0.876
0.484
0.881
0.784

Fig. 1 Factor effects on grade values

Step 5 From the value of grey relational grade in Table 4,


by using Eq. (9), the main effects are tabulated in Table 5
and the factor effects are plotted in Fig. 1.
Step 6 Considering maximization of grade values (Table 5/
Fig. 1), we can obtain the optimal parameter conditions
V3F3PA1.
Step 7 Using the grey grade value, ANOVA is formulated for
identifying the significant factors. The results of ANOVA are
given in Table 6. From ANOVA, it is clear that point angle
(43.21%) influences more on drilling Al/SiC MMC followed
by cutting speed (28.64%) and feed (26.21%).
Step 8 Predicted optimum condition
In order to predict the optimum condition, the expected
mean at the optimal settings () is calculated by using the
following model
m V 3 F 3 PA1  2  T gg
where V3; F3 and PA1 , and are the mean values of the grey
relational grade with the parameters at optimum levels and
Tgg is the overall mean of average grey grade.
The expected mean () at the optimal settings is found to
be 0.933.
Confidence interval (CI) is calculated as
r
h
i
C:I:
1
1
F 1; fe Ve neff R
0:257

where, F (1, fe) is the F ratio at a significance level of %,


is the risk, fe is the error degrees of freedom, Ve is the
error mean square, neff is the effective total number of tests
and R is the number of confirmation tests

neff

Total number
of observations
0
1

Total degress of freedom


1 @ associated with itmes used A
in estimating Ra

Therefore 95% confidence interval of the predicted


optimum condition is given by the following model, where
cgg =the Grey relational grade value after conducting the
confirmation experiments with optimal setting point, i.e.,
V3F3PA1
0:933  0:257  cgg  0:933 0:257
0:676  cgg  1:19

5 Confirmation experiment
The confirmation experiment is conducted at the optimum
settings to verify the quality characteristics for drilling of
Al/SiC MMC composite by drilling process recommended
by the investigation. The response values by the confirmation experiment trial at the optimal settings are Ra=7.6m,
Fc=1765.08 N and T=3.16 Nm. The grey relational grade
(cgg) value as per above discussion is found to be 0.952.
This result is within the 95% confidence interval of the
predicted optimum condition and also grey grade value of
Table 6 Results of ANOVA on grey grade
Factor

Dof

Sum of
squares

Mean
squares

FTest

%
Contribution

V
F
PA
Error
Total

2
2
2
2
8

0.059
0.054
0.089
0.004
0.206

0.030
0.027
0.045
0.002
0.026

15.00
13.50
22.50

28.64
26.21
43.21
1.94
100

Table 5 Main effects on grey grades


Factors
V
F
PA

Cutting speed
Feed
Point angle

0.527
0.537
0.767

0.675
0.653
0.627

0.716
0.728
0.524

Int J Adv Manuf Technol (2008) 37:250255

confirmation experiment is improved by 2% from the


predicted mean value. Hence the grey relational analysis
based on Taguchi method for the optimization of the multi
response problems is a very useful tool for predicting the
surface roughness, cutting force and torque in the drilling of
Al/SiC metal matrix composites.

6 Conclusions
Drilling experiments were conducted on a radial drilling
machine with TiN coated HSS twist drill and Al/SiC 10%
by volume fraction metal matrix composites as work
material. The surface roughness, cutting force and torque
values were collected under different cutting conditions for
various combinations of drilling parameters. The following
conclusions were drawn.

Grey relational analysis in the Taguchi method for the


optimization of the multi response problems is a very
useful tool for predicting the surface roughness, cutting
force and torque in the drilling of Al/SiC Metal Matrix
Composites.
It does not involve complicated mathematical theory or
computation and thus can be employed by the
engineers without a strong statistical background.
From this analysis, it is revealed that point angle,
cutting speed and feed rate are prominent factors which
affect the drilling of Al/SiC metal matrix composites.
Point angle influences (P=43.21%) more, followed by
cutting speed (P=28.64%) and feed (P=26.21%).
The best performance characteristics was obtained with
TiN coated HSS twist drill when drilling Al/SiC metal
matrix composites with the lower cutting point angle of
90, higher feed of 0.2 mm/rev and higher cutting
speed of 87.96 m/min.
Confirmation test results proved that the determined
optimum combination of drilling parameters satisfy the
real requirements of drilling operation of Al/SiC metal
matrix composites.

255

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