Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM) is a non-contact, force-free industrial cutting process. In Wire EDM, an electrical spark is used to cut different types of electrically-conductive materials such as common metals, carbides, alloys, and graphites.
In Wire EDM cutting, the material to be cut is submerged in a dielectric cutting fluid, usually deionized water. A thin single-strand wire electrode is moved around the material by a computer numerical control (CNC) robotic guidance system. An electric current is run through the wire, creating an electrical spark of intense heat (8000-12000 C). The electrical spark cuts the material by removing the metal content through melting and vaporization. The CNC guidance system directs the wire and the spark it generates over the cutting path for the desired part, but the wire does not touch the material. At the same time, the dielectric cutting fluid cools the material and flushes away particles that have been cut from the part material.