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Author Archives: Armani Goens

  1. A Brief Intro to Surface Grinding Machines

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    What Are Surface Grinding Machines?

    Surface grinding machines are used for surface grinding operations. This process removes impurities that can affect the functional and/or aesthetic quality of the final component. It is suitable for use with metallic and non-metallic materials.

    How Do Surface Grinding Machines Work?

    The three main components of a surface grinding machine are the rotating abrasive wheel, the workholding device, and the reciprocating or rotary table. The abrasive wheel smooths and refines the surface of a material by removing excess material from it. The workholding device (i.e., a chuck) holds the workpiece in place as it is processed. The table moves the workpiece around and across the face of the wheel as needed to achieve the desired specifications. 

    Types of Surface Grinding Machines

    There are three main types of surface grinding machines available, each of which is suitable for different surface grinding applications.

    • Horizontal spindle grinders. Horizontal spindle grinders—also referred to as peripheral surface grinders—are engineered to keep the flat periphery of the abrasive wheel in contact with the surface of the workpiece. This setup ensures the creation of a flat shape with a smooth finish, making it ideal for processing components that require flat surfaces. It is also suitable for angled or tapered surfaces and slotted or recessed surfaces. Typical components made using these machines include connecting rods, pins, and pistons. 
    • Vertical spindle grinders. Vertical spindle grinders—also referred to as wheel-face surface grinders—are designed for the quick removal of excess material from the workpiece. The abrasive wheel can be made in various forms to accommodate different component shapes. Typical components made using these machines include gears, rotors, and spacers. 
    • Single-disc/double-disc grinders. Single-disc and double-disc grinders are available in horizontal and vertical configurations. Single-disc grinders allow for a larger area of contact between the abrasive wheel and the workpiece, while double-disc grinders enable both sides of the workpiece to be processed at the same time. Typical components made using these machines include gears, plates, and washers.

    Surface Grinding Services at Kadco Ceramics

    Does your project involve surface grinding ceramic materials? The experts at Kadco Ceramics are here to help! Equipped with extensive ceramic surface grinding experience, we have the knowledge and skills to achieve the finish you need every single time. We offer a range of capabilities, including: 

    • Centerless end grinding
    • Rotary grinding
    • Grinding fixtures

    To learn more about our surface grinding offerings or discuss your specs with one of our team members, contact us today. 


  2. A Brief Intro to Pressure Transducers

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    What Are Pressure Transducers?

    Pressure transducers—also known as pressure sensors or transmitters—are devices engineered to measure and display the pressure of fluid within a system. They play a vital role in many pieces of equipment that require precise pressure measurement to work effectively and/or efficiently, including aircraft, HVAC systems, and pumps. 

    How Do Pressure Transducers Work?

    These devices work by converting pressure into analog electrical signals. They first measure the pressure of the fluid using a force collector (e.g., a flexible diaphragm that deforms when it is pressurized). This pressure measurement is then converted into an electrical output signal by a transduction element that uses a dependent resistive, capacitive, or inductive mechanism (e.g., a strain gage). Since the signal generated is proportional to the pressure, relaying it to controllers or programmable logic controllers (PLCs) enables trained facility workers to evaluate if the pressure is within an acceptable range. 

    There are many types of pressure transducers available. While basic models use strain gauges to measure the pressure acting upon them, advanced models use capacitance or piezoelectric sensors, which offer broader range, greater environmental suitability, and better precision. 

    Creating Pressure Transducers Using Precision Dicing and Machining

    Piezoelectric pressure transducers convert applied pressures to electrical signals using components made from quartz, ceramic, or other similar materials. The pieces must be carefully manufactured to work as intended. That’s why many industry professionals to the machining experts at Kadco Ceramics. We have the knowledge, skills, and tools to handle piezoelectrical materials and turn them into precision components, such as pressure transducers. 

    Our piezoelectrical materials list includes: 

    • Berlinite
    • Cane sugar
    • Quartz
    • Rochelle salt 
    • Topaz
    • Tourmaline

    Our machining capabilities include: 

    • Wafer dicing: a process used to separate small pieces of material—i.e., dice—from a semiconductor wafer
    • CNC milling: a process that utilizes computerized machines and tools to create the desired components by removing excess material from the workpiece
    • Core drilling: a process that removes a cylindrical core from the drilled hole
    • ID slicing: a process that produces repeated cuts on hard, brittle material
    • Surface grinding: a process that uses an abrasive disc or wheel to smooth and refine the surface of a material

    Kadco Ceramics: Your Partner and Expert for Piezoelectric Pressure Transducers

    Need piezoelectric pressure transducers? The piezoelectric machining experts at Kadco Ceramics are here to help! Our precision dicing and machining capabilities enable us to handle virtually any hard or soft material and turn it into a range of precision end products, including pressure transducers. To discuss your product specs with one of our representatives, contact us today. 

  3. A Brief Intro to CNC Drilling

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    A Brief Intro to CNC Drilling

    What Is CNC Drilling?

    CNC drilling is a machining process that utilizes a rotating cutting tool to produce round holes in a stationary workpiece. The holes are typically made to accommodate machine screws or bolts for assembly purposes. However, they can be used for aesthetic purposes depending on the design of the component.

    How Does CNC Drilling Work?

    The CNC drilling process has similar steps to many of the other CNC machining operations. These include:

    1. Creating the component design in CAD software. The first step in producing a CNC drilled component is creating a digital design of it in CAD software.
    2. Converting the design into machine instructions. Once the component design is finalized, it needs to be converted into a language the CNC unit can understand. This step typically requires running the CAD design through CAM software to generate machine code.
    3. Loading the instructions to the CNC machine. When loaded to the CNC machine, the machine code controls how the CNC machine and tooling will move and operate throughout the drilling process.
    4. Setting up the CNC machine. Setting up the CNC machine generally involves installing the appropriate drill bit and securing the workpiece.
    5. Executing the drilling operation. Once the machine code is loaded and the machine is set up, the operator can initiate the drilling operation.
    6. Evaluating the component. After the drilling operation is finished, the operator evaluates the component for any errors or imperfections.

    Advantages of CNC Drilling

    Compared to traditional drilling technologies, CNC drilling units offer a number of advantages, such as:

    • Higher accuracy. Drilling machines integrated with CNC technology can make holes that are accurate to the original design file within very tight margins.
    • Broader versatility. CNC drilling units can be used for a wide range of materials, from metal to plastic to wood. Additionally, since they can accommodate multiple drill bits, they can be utilized to produce a variety of holes.
    • Greater reproducibility. Since CNC drilling units are computer-controlled, they are less prone to error. As a result, manufacturers can achieve high consistency throughout a batch and between batches.

    Kadco Ceramics: Your CNC Drilling Experts

    Want to learn more about CNC drilling? Contact the machining experts at Kadco Ceramics! Equipped with over 30 years of experience in the machining industry, we’re well-equipped to answer or address any questions or concerns you may have.

  4. Ferroelectric vs. Piezoelectric Materials

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    Ferroelectric vs. Piezoelectric Materials

    Ferroelectric and piezoelectric materials each have a wide range of applications across multiple industries. These crystalline materials exhibit distinct electrical and structural properties that

    Ferroelectric materials exhibit spontaneous nonlinear polarization in the absence of an electric field. This polarization can be reversed by exposing the material to a strong electric field, after which the polarization will maintain its direction until a reverse electric field is applied to change it again. Some common examples of ferroelectric materials include PVF2, liquid crystals, and PZT thin films. Ferroelectric materials see frequent use for electronic components, such as capacitors, actuators, sensors, computer memory, and more. 

    Though all ferroelectric materials are also piezoelectric, not all piezoelectric materials are ferroelectric.  A piezoelectric material converts mechanical energy into electric energy. When piezoelectric materials are subjected to physical stress, such as stretching, bending, or compression, they develop electric potential as charge domains within the material get rearranged. An inverse effect occurs as well—piezoelectric materials exposed to an external electric field will change shape.

    Piezoelectric Machining at Kadco Ceramics

    Piezoelectric materials are used in a wide range of household and industrial devices. While some piezoelectric materials develop naturally, such as topaz and quartz, synthetic ferroelectric ceramics are often more cost-effective and provide better piezoelectric properties. These benefits have made piezoelectric ceramics very popular for equipment ranging from inkjet printers to generators. 

    It is vital to ensure that you are working with a vendor who will select the right ceramic material and shape it to meet your specifications. At Kadco Ceramics, we can help you choose the appropriate piezoelectric ceramics for your application. We also offer machining services for both prototyping and production.

    With our piezoelectric machining capabilities, we can produce the complex geometries required for applications like ultrasonic submarine detection and non-invasive neurological surgeries. We also work with other hard materials, including:

    • Alumina
    • Ferrites
    • Glass
    • Quartz
    • Sapphire
    • Silicon
    • Zirconia

    We are always eager for opportunities to work with new and unusual materials.

    Your Piezoelectric Machining Experts

    Machining piezoelectric materials requires specialized equipment and knowledge. At Kadco Ceramics, we combine state-of-the-art machinery with proprietary techniques and experience to machine piezoelectric materials for complex applications. Our expert staff gets precision results, no matter how difficult the material.

    Get in touch today to learn more about how we can serve your piezoelectric material needs.