Gases produced during spark erosion

The gases produced during erosion consist of dielectric vapours and metallic fumes. The vapours of the dielectrics IME 63, IME 82, IME 110 and IME 126 contain no benzene compounds, such as the polycyclic aromatics of the Benzpyrene type, even after they have been in use for some time.

There is no ill effect on health brought about by IME products. However this does not hold true for the metallic fumes that may develop during erosion (e. g. tungsten carbide, titanium carbide, chrome, nickel and molybdenum). It is therefore important for the dielectric level to be as high as possible over the place of erosion, so that most of the metallic fumes can condense in the dielectric.

German engineering guidelines (VDI 3402) prescribe a depth of 40 mm over the place of erosion. However a depth of 80 mm is to be recommended for health reasons. The metallic fumes rising up out of the dielectric cause the same problems as those that develop during the welding of metals. It is therefore advisable to suck off the gases that develop when extensive rough cut work has to be done.

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