A new approach to the macro-level optimization of tool geometro in machining is proposed. Methods for characterizing the tool material, the work material and the optimum tool geometry are proposed and a model describing the interactions between them is developed. Empirical evidence drawn from published literature is presented in support of the new approach. In this approach, the optimum tool geometry is characterized by a geometric entity number which can be explicity calculated in terms of cutting tool angles. Practical benefits derivable from the approach are discussed along with the issues requiring further research.

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