This effectively raises the critical temperature of any given application (i.e., the point at which any further rise in temperature causes a dramatic increase in tool flank wear). That means a tool can be run much faster with increased material removal rates and still offer acceptable tool life.

5ME’s system includes vacuum-jacketed insulated lines that carry the liquid nitrogen from the source to the cutting tool. The lance goes through the existing spindle (including high-torque and high-speed applications) using the inner diameter of the through-coolant drawbar.

That means the machine would no longer have through-spindle coolant capability, though you can leave flood coolant capability on the machine to increase versatility.

The patented solid-carbide cutting tool technology, which 5ME brands as BlueZone, incorporates channels that radiate out from the center, following the flute pattern internally to a venting port.

5ME has licensed Fullerton Tool Co. (Saginaw, MI) and Star SU LLC (Farmington Hills, MI) to provide BlueZone solid-carbide round tools. Additional global cutting tool OEMs are in negotiation to provide both round tools and indexable inserts, including Kennametal (Latrobe, PA), which built its first test and demonstration indexable high-feed mill in 2017.

Read more: Liquid Nitrogen an Alternative to Traditional Coolants