Addressing challenges in aerospace

Advertorial - Ask the Expert

Greenleaf’s Global Manager of Engineering/Applications Martin Dillaman answers questions on current aerospace manufacturing concerns.

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May 23, 2022

1 How can Greenleaf currently help aerospace manufacturers?

All of Greenleaf’s sales engineers receive extensive product and technical training, and many have previous experience in manufacturing. This guarantees our customers an experienced engineer to help develop solutions for higher productivity. Greenleaf’s sales team routinely shares best practices for using standard and specially designed tooling for applications in the special alloys found in aerospace applications.

2 Where can special-design tooling solutions be applied in aerospace applications?

Greenleaf focuses on building solutions for applications creating bottlenecks in customers’ processes. The focus is on understanding the customer’s current process and helping develop a solution that’ll provide maximum productivity. Throughout Greenleaf’s 77 years we’ve worked with customers to develop specially designed tools that reduce total setups, increase parts per hour, and offer repeatable tool life. The importance of having reliable processes with reduced human intervention is even more important with the struggles many manufacturers have finding skilled machinists.

3 In what aerospace applications can the new solid round tools, XSYTIN®-360 & Greenleaf-360, be used?

Greenleaf has traditionally offered indexable tooling solutions using advanced ceramic and carbide insert grades. By adding solid round tools to our portfolio, with standard carbide tooling as small as 0.125" (3mm), we can now support customers in more roughing and finishing applications with smaller part geometries. Using XSYTIN®-360, our phase-toughened solid ceramic end mills, allows customers to rough heat-resistant superalloy (HRSA) materials at speeds up to 10x faster than solid carbide end mills. Greenleaf-360, our solid carbide end mill line, allows finishing of the same part that’s been rough-machined with XSYTIN®-360. Both product lines can be specialized to help customers improve their manufacturing processes.

4 With additive manufacturing (AM) starting to take a larger role in the aerospace market, does Greenleaf have products capable of cutting these materials?

The materials used in AM, although similar in chemical composition to the standard high-temperature alloys, typically pose more abrasive wear to tooling. Areas generated during the printing process strictly for support, often in a lattice shape, can be difficult to machine due to heavy interruptions. These areas can be effectively machined with both indexable and solid ceramic products. Platens used in the printing process can be refurbished very efficiently using indexable ceramic face mills to remove any materials left behind once the finished parts are cut from the platens.

5 Have supply chain issues affected Greenleaf’s ability to deliver products to aerospace customers?

While other companies may have reduced staff and limited production during the global pandemic, Greenleaf focused on strategically building inventory to be ready to meet our customers’ demand. There’s been extensive planning and communication from our sales team to our manufacturing teams to ensure no delays in delivery of products to our valuable aerospace customers.

Greenleaf Corp.