Surface formation mechanism in ultraprecision diamond turning of coarse-grained polycrystalline ZnSe

Weihai Huang, Jiwang Yan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Zinc selenide is an excellent infrared optical material. In this study, ultraprecision diamond turning experiments were carried out on coarse-grained polycrystalline ZnSe (p-ZnSe) under various conditions and the corresponding surface formation mechanisms were investigated by examining the surface topography, chip morphology, material microstructural change, and cutting forces. Two kinds of surface defects were observed (i.e. plowing-induced micron-scale cleavage craters and tearing-induced submicron-scale tearing pits). It was determined that plowing induced micron-scale cleavage craters could be suppressed by reducing undeformed chip thickness. Furthermore, it was ascertained that tearing-induced submicron-scale tearing pits could be restrained by using a cutting tool with a zero rake angle. The minimal surface roughness was dominated by grain boundary steps formed when the cutting tool crossed twin boundaries at a large angle. A model was proposed for correlating surface defects and boundary steps with crystal orientations and cutting directions. By using a large-nose diamond tool for cutting, a smooth surface of 1.5 nm Sa was obtained. In addition, a zinc blende to cinnabar phase transformation was observed in the cutting chips, and metallization of cutting chips occurred at an extremely small undeformed chip thickness (~20 nm). Moreover, it was discovered that phase transformation inside the workpiece depends on the radius of the tool nose. The findings of this study provide an important reference for ultraprecision machining of brittle polycrystalline materials.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103554
JournalInternational Journal of Machine Tools and Manufacture
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Jun


  • Diamond turning
  • Grain boundary
  • Phase transformation
  • Polycrystalline ZnSe
  • Surface integrity
  • Ultraprecision machining

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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