EMT100: The Carbide Substrate

Enhanced rigidity, purity & consistency make EMT100 the ideal substrate for PCD carrying AND diamond coating!

Weight reduction is an integral key to increasing aircraft operational efficiencies. Where aluminum alloys were still widely used as a base material 20 years ago, a whole new range of materials, from titanium alloys to complicated composite stacks, are finding their way into the new era of flight. Aircraft developers set the highest goals for themselves in all facets of manufacturing. It is now possible to build aircraft which operate over 15% more efficiently compared to other modern passenger jets from the 1990s. Extensive use of advanced materials such as fiber-reinforced plastics and composite stacks make it possible to achieve this goal. Accordingly, with every advance in structural materials so too requires an advance in machine tools and consumables.

The Challenge

An optimum hole can be achieved easily in individual materials with a suitable carbide grade. Boring into composite materials is much more difficult, because the properties of the various materials differ greatly. Burr formation must be prevented when drilling a titanium layer, because burr removal is not possible for structural reasons; as it would adversely affect the accuracy and integrity of the construct. A controlled, rounded edge is ideal for titanium machining. However, in order to avoid delamination, sharp edges are required to drill the carbon-fiber-reinforced layer. These contrasting properties require a tool geometry specifically designed for the overall work-piece. The carbide substrate is the foundation for any such tool whether coated, uncoated or acting as a PCD carrier.

EMT 100 Form Blank

The Solution

Step 1: Carbide Grade Selection

Traditionally, RAMET (the original C2 10% micro-grain carbide) was the top choice substrate due to its wide range of machining applications. Today, knowledgeable engineers and machinists demand EXTRA attention be paid to application specific tooling. EXTRAMET recognizes and embraces the fact that every application, every work-piece, and every scenario dictates optimal grade selection. And that selection process always requires a little something more than a general purpose “solid, C2 10% micro-grain”.

The Bottom Line!

The aircraft industry exemplifies the advantages of transparent coordination between Extramet, the tool manufacturer, the coater, and the end user to achieve significant improvements in the machining of any work-piece.

New Process uses tungsten carbide surface treatment to extend service life of oil well wear parts.

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Mud motor bearings, flow restrictors and other components are now available with an aerospace grade coating on inside diameters, outside diameters and flat surfaces. The proprietary process involves layers of tungsten carbide and other metals specially bonded to a hardened steel substrate. Items will not delaminate because of the metallurgical bond between the layers.

Traditional production parts produced using solid carbide, carbide & steel assemblies, carbide tiles or brazed alloys have all yielded satisfactory results in the fight against erosion. With today's escalation cost for tungsten carbide the prices for these conventionally produced parts have skyrocketed. Extramet's goal is to produce a lower cost alternative that provides acceptable service life.

Most components are supplied in 4-5 weeks. Stocking programs are available. Breakdown service is available in most cases. There are size limitations.

Increased Safety and Productivity Through Sophisticated Tooling for the Aerospace Industry

Tooling for Aerospace

Twenty years ago the aviation industry was largely invested in using aluminum alloys. With the next generation of aircrafts imminent such as the Airbus A320neo and A350, or the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and 737 MAX, a new range of materials were needed to machine composite stacks.

When machining these difficult composites you require a tool made of high-quality tungsten carbide due to the vast difference in the properties of the different materials. This requires optimally designing the tool geometry for machining, then if needed, a suitable coating. However, to get the best results, the base material – the tungsten carbide substrate – is critical for success. Due to years of cooperation with many partners in aircraft manufacturing, we were able to gain extensive knowledge in this area.

Machining Ti / CFRP:
Our specially developed double step drills made out of EMT 100 tungsten carbide were able to meet all the requirement for machining a TI / CFRP composite without being coated. The tight drilling tolerance could be met in both carbon-reinforced as well as titanium materials.

Machining Ti / CFRP / Al:
Coated tools have been significantly improving for years. When constructing the fuselage of an A380, a diamond coated drill made of EMT 100 is used to machine the pressure bulkhead. This meant that two processes (drilling and reaming) could be replaced by a single step. With this change an addition of 140% service life was also achieved.