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Wear Transitions and Tribochemical Reactions in Ceramics



S Jahanmir


Structural ceramics are used in diverse tribological applications due to their unique properties that include resistance to abrasion and erosion, resistance to corrosive wear, wear resistance at elevated temperatures, low density, and unique electrical, thermal, and magnetic properties. Applications include precision instrument bearings, cutting tool inserts, prosthetic articulating joints, and engine components. Following a brief overview of the processing methods applied to alumina, silicon nitride, and silicon carbide, the wear behavior of these ceramics is reviewed. The wear behavior changes as the load or ght coefficient of friction are increased. This change is associated with a drastic increase in wear at critical load that depends on the material and test conditions. The transition from mild to severe wear occurs through a microfracture process at the sliding contact. Contact mechanics is used to develop a simple model for this transition. The proposed model provides estimates of the transition load within a factor of two of the experimentally obtained values. The limitations of this model and its use in design of tribological components are discussed. The role of lubrication and tribochemical reactions between ceramic surfaces and atmospheric moisture on the wear behavior is discussed.
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part J-Journal of Engineering Tribology
Iss. J6


alumina, ceramics, contact failure, fracture, silicon carbide, silicon nitride, wear


Jahanmir, S. (2003), Wear Transitions and Tribochemical Reactions in Ceramics, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part J-Journal of Engineering Tribology (Accessed May 22, 2024)


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Created January 1, 2003, Updated February 19, 2017