Project - Rotary-Linear Hybrid Axes for Meso-scale Machining

Rotary-Linear Hybrid Axes for Meso-scale Machining


Michael Liebman
Marsette Vona
Vijay Shilpiekandula


National Science Foundation

We are designing and building a prototype hybrid machine tool axis as a key component of new manufacturing machines for meso-scale parts.  By hybrid we mean that the two axes of motion are compounded in a single moving component.  We define meso-scale parts as having a size on the order of centimeters and thus falling between the domains of microfabrication and standard machining.  Such parts include dental restorations, molds, dies, and turbine blades.  We currently have built a prototype rotary-linear axis.  It consists of a central shaft which is driven in both rotation and translation.  This hybridization minimizes machine inertias and thereby maximizes accelerations allowing for the production of complex parts rapidly and accurately.  The minimization of inertias also increases the frequency of structural resonances allowing for control at higher bandwidths.