The target of the research is to employ the autoresonant control technique in order to maintain the nonlinear oscillation mode at resonance (i.e. ultrasonic vibration at the tip of a drill bit at a constant level) during vibro-impact process. Numerical simulations and experiments have been executed. A simplified Matlab-Simulink model which simulates the ultrasonically assisted machining process consists of two parts. The first part represents an ultrasonic transducer that contains a piezoelectric transducer and a 2-step concentrator (waveguide). The second part reflects the applied load to the ultrasonic transducer due to the vibro-impact process. Parameters of the numerical models have been established based on experimental measurements and the model validity has been confirmed through experiments performed on an electromechanical ultrasonic transducer. The model of the ultrasonic transducer together with the model of the applied load was supplemented with a model of the autoresonant control system. The autoresonant control intends to provide the possibility of self-tuning and self-adaptation mechanism for an ultrasonic transducer to maintain its resonant regime of oscillations automatically by means of positive feedback. This is done through a signal to be controlled (please refer to Figure 7.2 and Figure 7.3) transformation and amplification. In order to examine the effectiveness and the efficiency of the autoresonant control system, three control strategies have been employed depending on the attributes of the signals to be controlled . Mechanical feedback control uses a displacement signal at the end of the 2nd step of the ultrasonic transducer. The other two control strategies are current feedback control and power feedback control. Current feedback control employs the electrical current flowing through the piezoceramic rings (piezoelectric transducer) as the signal to be controlled while power feedback control takes into account both the electrical current and the power of the ultrasonic transducer. Comparison of the results of the ultrasonic vibrating system excitation with different control strategies is presented. It should be noted that during numerical simulation the tool effect is not considered due to the complexity of a drill bit creates during the Ultrasonically Assisted Drilling (UAD) process. An effective autoresonant control system was developed and manufactured for machining experiments. Experiments on Ultrasonically Assisted Drilling (UAD) have been performed to validate and compare with the numerical results. Two sizes of drill bits with diameters 3mm and 6mm were applied in combination with three autoresonant control strategies. These were executed during drilling aluminium alloys with one fixed rotational speed associated with several different feed rates. Vibration levels, control efforts, feed force reduction were monitored during experiments. Holes quality and surface finish examinations supplement analysis of the autoresonant control results. In addition, another interesting research on the investigation of the universal matchbox (transformer) has been carried out. Introducing a varying air gap between two ferrite cores allows the optimization of the ultrasonic vibrating system, in terms of the vibration level, effective matchbox inductance, voltage and current level, phase difference between voltage and current, supplied active power etc (more details please refer to Appendix I).
A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.