Anglo American has filed a patent for a method of machining articles from superhard materials like PCD or PCBN. The method involves scanning the disc for flaws, creating a machining program based on the flaws, and machining the articles accordingly. The disc must have a diameter of 100 mm or less and a thickness of 10 mm or less. GlobalData’s report on Anglo American gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Anglo American, Wireless charging system was a key innovation area identified from patents. Anglo American's grant share as of January 2024 was 48%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Machining small articles from superhard material discs

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Anglo American Plc

The patent application (Publication Number: US20240012381A1) describes a method for machining articles from a disc made of superhard material. The method involves providing a disc with specific dimensions, identifying defective portions through scanning for flaws and contaminants, overlaying a nesting pattern onto the disc based on the scanning results, and machining the articles accordingly. The scanning process can be done using ultrasonic or visual methods to generate scan data for locating non-defective and defective portions on the disc. The machining program is then reviewed and modified to exclude articles overlapping with defective areas, ensuring precision in the machining process. The method is applicable to discs made of materials like polycrystalline diamond (PCD) or polycrystalline cubic boron nitride (PCBN), with the articles being cutting tips and the machining techniques including wire electro-discharge machining and wire laser cutting.

Additionally, the patent application includes claims for a computer program and a computer program product that enable a computer apparatus to perform the machining method described in the patent. By utilizing the computer program with specific code, the machining process can be automated and optimized for efficiency and accuracy. This innovation in machining superhard materials from discs showcases a systematic approach to identifying and addressing defects, ultimately leading to the production of high-quality articles with precision and consistency.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies