Lapping

Definition - What does Lapping mean?

Lapping refers to a machining process wherein two surfaces with a particular type of abrasive between them are rubbed by mechanical or manual means.

In this process, chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) is typically utilized, where materials like plastic, metal, silicon, glass, etc. are smoothed and machined using a serrated, rotating, circular plate and cast-iron type of alloy along with slurry grit.

Corrosionpedia explains Lapping

Lapping can be divided into two types:

  • Traditional or grinding - This involves rubbing two brittle materials together, like iron against glass or against itself. In this, the abrasives used include: emery, diamond, rouge, silicon carbide, etc.

  • Charged - This involves materials like ceramic or pitch and other softer materials as the lap, and then charged with a particular abrasive. In this setup, the lap is utilized to cut harder material or the work piece. Then, the abrasives are embedded with the softer substance.

Lapping is used to produce the desired surface roughness as well as accurate surfaces. One common application is in the field of lens making. Current technology allows high-speed lapping, making it a trouble-free process. With this technology, the results are outstanding, as it is 20 times quicker than the traditional type.

High speed is ideal for all metal types such as aluminum, brass, steel, tungsten, bronze, cast iron and carbide, among others. It also works well in both irregular and regularly shaped materials, making it a preferred method.

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