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Micro-machining


Machining for – Detailed – Precision Components

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The micro-machining center recently acquired by the AMP team facilitates our ability to produce micro-electromechanical systems in our shop. Examples of the uses for this device include cutting electromagnetic dies for micro-fluidic pathways for application in hydrogen fuel cell bipolar plates and high-density heat exchanger applications for diesel engine heat recovery. In it's most basic form, it is the same as a conventional CNC machining center, just on a microscopic scale with ultra-high speed spindle capabilities.

Micro-machining uses CNC machining to produce small, intricate mechanical components with conventional machining methods on a miniaturized scale.

The advent of micro-fluidic pathways for flow sheets used in fuel cell bipolar plates, heat exchanger flow sheets, and decorative surface modification has expanded the use of micro-machining outside the watch making and medical device industries.

Employed in our Lima, Ohio R&D facility as a viable method for manufacturing Electromagnetic (EMF) forming dies, micro-machining enables the transfer of precise microscopic shapes from a die to a work piece at high volume manufacturing rates, making them very affordable and adaptable.

Micro-machining can:

  • Produce highly complex and very fine shapes used in micro fluidic pathway die work.
  • Provide micro embossed surface characteristics.
  • Reduce the cost to produce complex micro shapes by in-sourcing this technology.

American Trim stands out as a progressive and innovative technology enabler with this capability and is capable of developing exciting new functional and decorative features using state-of-the-art technology that can be applied to the decorative side of the business. Few, if any, others have incorporated this technology into the industrial manufacturing community. These capabilities provide new applications and enable advances that our potential customers have been unable to attain before now.


Micro-machining Specifications

Micro-machining enables us to machine features as small as 1 X 10^-3 (0.001") with tolerances of 1 X 10^-4 0.0001". Normal machining yields tolerances of 1 X 10^-3 ( 0.001") with features at 1 X 10^-2 ( 0.010"). This is one full order of magnitude finer than the best conventional machining capability.

Possible Micromachined Products

  • Decorative features applied to metal "skins" for automotive interiors and electronic device coverings.
  • Micro-fluidic pathways for:
    • Heat exchanger
    • Fuel cell plates – including turbulence patterns and we can create hydro-phobic or hydro-philic surfaces which enable advances in performance of these plates.