Direct observation of discharging phenomena in vibration-assisted micro-electrical discharge machining

Tatsuya Shitara, Kenjiro Fujita, Jiwang Yan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


It has been previously reported that electrical discharge machining (EDM) performance can be improved by tool electrode vibration. However, the mechanism of vibration-assisted EDM has not been clarified and the optimal vibration condition remains unknown due to the difficulty in direct process observation. In this study, direct observation of the EDM gap by using a high-speed video camera through a transparent workpiece electrode made of single-crystal 4H-SiC was attempted. It was found that tool vibration caused discharge dispersion and discharge frequency increase, and this tendency was more significant at higher amplitudes and higher frequencies. In addition, tool vibration-induced periodic discharge was observed, which prevented concentrated discharge and short-circuiting. Accordingly, the machining speed was improved and surface roughness was reduced. This study succeeded for the first time in observing the discharge behaviors in vibration-assisted EDM, thus revealed the effects of key parameters for process optimization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1125-1138
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2020 May 1


  • Discharge distribution
  • Electrical discharge machining
  • High-speed video camera
  • Transparent workpiece electrode
  • Vibration-assisted EDM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Software
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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