The invention of the PDC cutter propelled the fixed cutter to the forefront of the drilling industry and the idea instantly took off. Because the shearing action of PDC cutters are more efficient than the crushing action of a button or tooth bit, fixed cutters are in high demand.
In 1982, PDC drill bits accounted for only 2% of total footage drilled. In 2010, 65% of total footage drilled was by PDCs.
The diamond drill bit is used in nearly all applications including geothermal energy drilling, mining, water well and natural gas drilling and oil well drilling. Total depths range from 100' to 20,000'. PDC drill bits are used extensively in natural gas drilling.
PDC also has some limitations like impact damage, heat damage and abrasive wear all inhibit a drill bit's performance and can occur in even the softest geological formations. However, the most difficult formation for a PDC bit to drill are extremely abrasive ones. With PDC popularity on the rise, bit manufacturing companies are seeking new materials and design aspects to make a tougher bit without compromising ROP.
Cutters are made using a combination of high heat and high pressure. Man made diamonds can be grown in 5-10 minutes. Because of this diamond content, a fixed cutter bit may also be known as a diamond drill bit. High heat plus pressure creates a PDC (polycrystalline diamond compact) cutter. Cutters are made from a carbide substrate and diamond grit. High heat of around 2800 degrees and high pressure of approximately 1,000,000 psi forms the compact. A cobalt alloy is also present and acts as a catalyst to the sintering process. The cobalt helps bond the carbide and diamond.
PDC has many other similar products such as PDC Cutters for Oil and Gas Drilling and PCD Blanks. And other tools for drilling or Diamond Grinding Wheel (includes Synthetic Diamond) like Cutting Tools, Diamond Bearing, Thermally Stable Polycrystalline (TSP), etc.
A diamond grinding cup wheel is a metal-bonded diamond tool with diamond segments welded or cold-pressed on a steel (or other metal, such as aluminum) wheel body, which usually looks like a cup. Diamond grinding cup wheels are usually mounted on concrete grinders to grind abrasive building materials like concrete, granite and marble.
There are various styles and specifications of diamond grinding cup wheels to fit various application requirements. The ones with many big diamond segments can undertake heavy workloads, for example, grinding concrete and stone, while those with small or sparse diamond segments are normally used for fast removal of paints, wallpapers, glues, epoxy and other surface coatings.