Technical Brief

A Comparison of Techniques to Measure the Wear Flat Area of Conventional and Superabrasive Grinding Wheels

[+] Author and Article Information
Pablo Puerto, Raúl Fernández, Iván Gallego

Mechanical and Industrial Production Department,
Faculty of Engineering,
Mondragon Unibertsitatea,
Mondragon, Basque Country 20500, Spain

Benjamin Kirsch, Jan C. Aurich

Institute for Manufacturing Technology
and Production Systems,
University of Kaiserslautern,
Kaiserslautern 67663, Germany

Jon Madariaga

Eibar, Basque Country 20600, Spain

Contributed by the Tribology Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF TRIBOLOGY. Manuscript received May 2, 2013; final manuscript received November 29, 2014; published online January 27, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Robert Wood.

J. Tribol 137(2), 024503 (Apr 01, 2015) (7 pages) Paper No: TRIB-13-1094; doi: 10.1115/1.4029276 History: Received May 02, 2013; Revised November 29, 2014; Online January 27, 2015

Wear of abrasive grains is one of the key issues influencing the grinding process and the resulting workpiece quality. Being able to quantify wheel wear in-process allows parameterization of grinding models that can help assuring part surface integrity. However, one of the main problems in measuring wear of abrasive grains is their small size, which makes this task to be not trivial. In this paper, several measuring techniques are compared in order to determine which one offers the best potential to quantify the wear of conventional and superabrasive grinding wheels. The selected techniques include optical macroscopy, optical microscopy, profilometry, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Among other results, direct comparisons of the same exact wear flat area measured with different techniques are shown.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Malkin, S., 2008, Grinding Technology: Theory and Application of Machining With Abrasives, 2nd ed., Ellis Horwood Limited, New York.
Ju, Y., Farris, T. N., and Chandrasekar, S., 1998, “Theoretical Analysis of Heat Partition and Temperatures in Grinding,” ASME J. Tribol., 120(4), pp. 789–794. [CrossRef]
Aurich, J. C., and Kirsch, B., 2012, “Kinematic Simulation of High-Performance Grinding for Analysis of Chip Parameters of Single Grains,” CIRP J. Manuf. Sci. Technol., 5(3), pp. 164–174. [CrossRef]
Verkerk, J., 1977, “Final Report Concerning CIRP Cooperative Work on the Characterization of Grinding Wheel Topography,” CIRP Ann. Manuf. Technol., 26(2), pp. 385–395.
Badger, J. A., and Torrance, A. A., 2000, “A Comparison of Two Models to Predict Grinding Forces From Wheel Surface Topography,” Int. J. Mach. Tools Manuf., 40(8), pp.1099–1120. [CrossRef]
Durgumahanti, U. S., Singh, V., and Rao, P. V., 2009, “A New Model for Grinding Force Prediction and Analysis,” Int. J. Mach. Tools Manuf., 50(3), pp. 231–240. [CrossRef]
Yan, L., Zhou, Z., Jiang, F., and Rong, Y., 2010, “The Application of Three Dimensional Surface Parameters to Characterizing Grinding Wheel Topography,” Adv. Mater. Res., 126–128, pp. 603–608. [CrossRef]
De Pellegrin, D. V., and Torrance, A. A., 2006, “Characterisation of Abrasive Particles and Surfaces in Grinding,” Diamond at Work Conference, accessed Dec. 6, 2014, available online: http://hdl.handle.net/2262/10918
Lachance, S., Warkentin, A., and Bauer, R., 2003, “Development of an Automated System for Measuring Grinding Wheel Wear Flats,” J. Manuf. Syst., 22(2), pp. 130–135. [CrossRef]
Gomes de Oliveira, J. F., Coelho, R. T., and Neto, C. K., 1999, “Development of an Optical Scanner to Study Wear on the Working Surface of Grinding Wheels,” Mach. Sci. Technol., 3(2), pp. 239–253. [CrossRef]
Puerto, P., Madariaga, J., Fernández, R., Iriarte, A., and Gallego, I., 2012, “A Non-Destructive On-Machine Technique to Measure the Wear Flat Area of Grinding Wheels,” The 9th International Conference on High Speed Machinin g, pp. 123–128.


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

Image of wear flats in superabrasive wheel obtained with optical microscope

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Image of wear flats obtained with optical macroscope: (a) worn zone observed with low magnification and (b) worn zone observed with higher magnification, adhered metal can be noticed

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Image of worn wheel surface: (a) using dark field lighting, (b) using bright field lighting, and (c) digitally processed image to identify the wear flats

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 10

Comparison of the same exact worn area observed with different techniques: (a) SEM, (b) optical microscope, (c) confocal profilometer, (d) profile A-B denoted in image “c” obtained through confocal profilometry, and (e) confocal image

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 11

Evolution of wear flat area as the removed part material increases

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 12

Wear evolution of a single grain as grinding progresses (images acquired using an on-machine integrated optical microscopy device)

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Picture of wheel surface where the different areas in which the wheel was divided are indicated. Numbers indicate how many grinding passes have been performed on each slice.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Image of wear flats of the wheel obtained with the on-machine integrated optical device

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Image of worn zone obtained through SEM. The white box denotes the area magnified in Fig. 10.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Topography of worn zone obtained by confocal profilometry: (a) isometric view, (b) top view, and (c) processed image (wear flats)

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

Image of wear flats of superabrasive wheel surface obtained with digital fringe projection 3D scanner

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

Image of wear flats obtained by SEM: (a) general view, (b) detail of abrasive grain, and (c) detail of wear flat within grain

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 13

Comparison of the same exact worn area observed with different techniques: (a) structured-light 3D scanner, (b) SEM, (c) on-machine optical microscope, and (d) optical microscope in the laboratory

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 14

Evolution of a single grain as grinding progresses: small worn surface, larger worn surface, and broken grain tip



Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In