This paper demonstrates the use of multi-scale curvature analysis, an areal new surface characterization technique for better understanding topographies, for analyzing surfaces created by conventional machining and grinding. Curvature, like slope and area, changes with scale of observation, or calculation, on irregular surfaces, therefore it can be used for multi-scale geometric analysis. Curvatures on a surface should be indicative of topographically dependent behavior of a surface and curvatures are, in turn, influenced by the processing and use of the surface. Curvatures have not been well characterized previously. Curvature has been used for calculations in contact mechanics and for the evaluation of cutting edges. In the current work two parts were machined and then one of them was ground. The surface topographies were measured with a scanning laser confocal microscope. Plots of curvatures as a function of position and scale are presented, and the means and standard deviations of principal curvatures are plotted as a function of scale. Statistical analyses show the relations between curvature and these two manufacturing processes at multiple scales.
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