Ultra-precision machines are widely used to turn aspherical profiles on mould inserts for the injection moulding of optical lenses. During turning of a profile on a stainless steel mould insert, the cutting speed reduces significantly to 0 as the cutting tool is fed towards the center of the machined profile. This paper reports on experiments carried out to study the wear of uncoated, PVD-coated and CVD-coated carbide tools in the ultra-precision machining of STAVAX (modified AISI 420 stainless steel) at low speeds.

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