An Efficient Offline Method for Determining the Thermally Sensitive Points of a Machine Tool Structure

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Whether from internal sources or arising from environmental sources, thermal error in most machine tools is inexorable. Out of several thermal error control methods, electronic compensation can be an easy-to-implement and cost effective solution. However, analytically locating the optimal thermally sensitive points within the machine structure for compensation have been a challenging task. This is especially true when complex structural deformations arising from the heat generated internally as well as long term environmental temperature fluctuations can only be controlled with a limited number of temperature inputs. This paper presents some case study results confirming the sensitivity to sensor location and a new efficient offline method for determining localized thermally sensitive points within the machine structure using finite element method (FEA) and Matlab software. Compared to the empirical and complex analytical methods, this software based method allows efficient and rapid optimization for detecting the most effective location(s) including practicality of installation. These sensitive points will contribute to the development and enhancement of new and existing thermal error compensation models respectively by updating them with the location information. The method is shown to provide significant benefits in the correlation of a simple thermal control model and comments are made on the efficiency with which this method could be practically applied.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 37th International MATADOR 2012 Conference
EditorsSrichand Hinduja, Lin Li
PublisherSpringer London
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781447144809
ISBN (Print)9781447144793
Publication statusPublished - 9 Oct 2012
Event37th International MATADOR Conference - University of Manchester , Manchester, United Kingdom
Duration: 25 Jul 201227 Jul 2012
Conference number: 37 (Link to Call for Papers)


Conference37th International MATADOR Conference
Abbreviated titleMATADOR 2012
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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