Surface texturing of drill bits for adhesion reduction and tool life enhancement

Tiffany Davis Ling, Pinzhi Liu, Shangwu Xiong, Donald Grzina, Jian Cao, Q. Jane Wang*, Z. Cedric Xia, Rajesh Talwar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

93 Scopus citations


Properly designed micro-scale surface textures can have positive impact on adhesion reduction and lubrication enhancement, which can lead to lower friction and improved performance of a contact interface. The present study aims to utilize this function of textures to reduce the adhesion between a drill and a workpiece. In this study, rectangular surface textures were generated on the margins of drill bits using a diode-pumped Nd:YVO4 picosecond laser with a wavelength of 532 nm. Two designs were created in which the textures covered approximately 10 and 20 % of the margin surface area. Textured drills were tested by drilling a series of holes in a titanium plate while recording cutting forces, and the results were compared with the performance of baseline samples. Thermographic heat profiles and visual inspections of the drills were taken at increments of 5 and 10-15 holes, respectively. The comparison demonstrated an encouraging improvement in drill bit life as judged by the number of holes drilled before failure. Textured drills were found to reduce adhesion of titanium chips on the drill margins. This work has demonstrated the potential of texturing to significantly improve the lifetime of drill bits and similar cutting tools.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)113-122
Number of pages10
JournalTribology Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2013


  • Adhesion reduction
  • Drill bit
  • Laser surface texturing
  • Micro-dimpling
  • Tribology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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