The surface characteristics of a machined product strongly influence its functional performance. During machining, the grain size of the surface is frequently modified, thus the properties of the machined surface are different to that of the original bulk material. These changes must be taken into account when modeling the surface integrity effects resulting from machining. In the present work, grain size changes induced during turning of AA 7075-T651 (160 HV) alloy are modeled using the Finite Element (FE) method and a user subroutine is implemented in the FE code to describe the microstructural change and to simulate the dynamic recrystallization, with the consequent formation of new grains. In particular, a procedure utilizing the Zener-Hollomon and Hall-Petch equations is implemented in the user subroutine to predict the evolution of the material grain size and the surface hardness when varying the cutting speeds (180-720 m/min) and tool nose radii (0.4-1.2 mm). All simulations were performed for dry cutting conditions using uncoated carbide tools. The effectiveness of the proposed FE model was demonstrated through its capability to predict grain size evolution and hardness modification from the bulk material to machined surface. The model is validated by comparing the predicted results with those experimentally observed.
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