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Ceramics

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All ceramic cutting tools have excellent wear resistance at high cutting speeds.
There are a range of ceramic grades available for a variety of applications.

  1. Oxide ceramics are aluminium oxide based (Al2O3), with added zirconia (ZrO2) for crack inhibition. This generates a material that is chemically very stable, but which lacks thermal shock resistance.
  2. Mixed ceramics are particle reinforced through the addition of cubic carbides or carbonitrides (TiC, Ti(C,N)). This improves toughness and thermal conductivity.
  3. Whisker-reinforced ceramics use silicon carbide whiskers (SiCw) to dramatically increase toughness and enable the use of coolant. Whisker-reinforced ceramics are ideal for machining Ni-based alloys.
  4. Silicon nitride ceramics (Si3N4) represent another group of ceramic materials. Their elongated crystals form a self-reinforced material with high toughness. Silicon nitride grades are successful in grey cast iron, but a lack of chemical stability limits their use in other work-piece materials.
  5. Sialon (SiAlON) grades combine the strength of a self-reinforced silicon nitride network with enhanced chemical stability. Sialon grades are ideal for machining heat resistant super alloys (HRSA).
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