• FTIR lubricant analysis: Concentration of dispersed sulphuric acid

      Sautermeister, F.A.; Priest, Martin; Fox, M.F. (2014)
      This paper aims to establish the acid concentration of finely dispersed droplets in hydrocarbon oils. Small quantities of aqueous sulphuric acid (H2SO4) were found to be trapped within hydrocarbon shells, making them inaccessible for concentration evaluation by titration. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) used in the attenuated total reflection mode (ATR; FTIR-ATR) was applied to study the reaction products of squalane, C30H62, and an API Group I base oil with various concentrations of aqueous H2SO4. The absorbance comparison usually used for estimating acid concentrations was found to fail when small quantities of acid are trapped in the reaction product. It was found that the peak shift and changes in absorbance found for various pure aqueous acid concentrations were useful to establish the remaining concentration of the trapped H2SO4. This paper fulfils the identified need to study acid dissociation-dependent peak shifts of H2SO4 to find the acid concentration of finely dispersed droplets in hydrocarbon oils.
    • Impact of sulphuric acid on cylinder lubrication for large 2-stroke marine diesel engines: Contact angle, interfacial tension and chemical interaction

      Sautermeister, F.A.; Priest, Martin; Lee, P.M.; Fox, M.F. (2013)
      The effect of sulphuric acid on the chemical and physical behaviour of the piston ring lubricant in a marine engine cylinder was investigated. To reveal the basic influence of H2SO4 on the lubricant film, the saturated hydrocarbon Squalane (C30H62) was chosen as a simple model oil. The interfacial tension between aqueous H2SO4 (0-98% w/w) and C30H62 was measured between -3 and 165 degrees C to understand droplet formation in the lubricant. Interfacial tension decreases with increasing acid concentration and is temperature dependent.
    • The Influence of Lubricant Degradation on Measured Piston Ring Film Thickness in a Fired Gasoline Reciprocating Engine

      Notay, Rai S.; Priest, Martin; Fox, M.F. (2019-01)
      A laser induced fluorescence system has been developed to visualise the oil film thickness between the piston ring and cylinder wall of a fired gasoline engine via a small optical window mounted in the cylinder wall. A fluorescent dye was added to the lubricant in the sump to allow the lubricant to fluoresce when absorbing laser radiation. The concentration of the dye did not disturb the lubricant chemistry or its performance. Degraded engine oil samples were used to investigate the influence of lubricant quality on ring pack lubricant film thickness measurements. The results show significant differences in the lubricant film thickness profiles for the ring pack when the lubricant degrades which will affect ring pack friction and ultimately fuel economy.
    • Representative tribometer testing of wire rope fretting contacts: the effect of lubrication on fretting wear

      Dyson, C.J.; Chittenden, R.J.; Priest, Martin; Fox, M.F.; Hopkins, W.A. (Taylor & Francis, 2020)
      Fretting wear has a significant influence on wire rope fatigue life when in cyclic bending, particularly for crossed-wire contacts, where the interfacial motion of the surfaces is complex and multi-axial. To simulate these contacts in a controlled manner, a laboratory-scale, crossed-cylinder, reciprocating fretting wear test was developed. A broad range of contemporary lubrication technologies were evaluated using this method and a systematic multivariate statistical analysis was performed to identify the most significant lubrication-related parameters with respect to these fretting wear conditions. Wear area increase per slip cycle was the most relevant measure of wear damage, as this captured the influence of changes in the fretting wear regime during the test. The ability of a lubricant to reduce damaging fretting wear during the run-in phase was the biggest influence on long-term fretting wear, particularly for grease-lubricated contacts.
    • Thin-film and marginal lubrication of PolyEtherKetone-steel sliding contacts at high temperature and high speed

      Dyson, C.J.; Priest, Martin; Fox, M.F.; Hopkins, W.A. (2018)
      PolyEtherKetone (PEK) is a suitable material for tribological systems which specifically require the properties of high chemical resistance, low component weight, seizure resistance under starved lubrication conditions and operation at higher temperatures than many other engineering polymers can survive. PEK is used with a liquid lubricant at high temperatures and velocities to reduce friction and also to control unstable friction and wear, particularly in the region of the material’s glass transition temperature, Tg. Intermittent and marginal lubrication using representative high temperature synthetic lubricants was applied to high speed, high temperature PEK/steel sliding contacts to determine the effectiveness of lubrication under these conditions. Variations in the stability of the thin lubricant films were observed, particularly under different load conditions. Under low load conditions, the lubricant polarity and the related ability to form a film in the contact was important. Under high load conditions, the thermal stability of the lubricant became more important in retaining stability in the friction and wear mechanisms. Whilst not ideal practice, marginal lubrication of PEK-steel sliding contacts can be achieved by selection of an appropriate lubricant, even in the glass transition region of PEK.
    • The Tribological Behaviour of Carbon Fibre Reinforced Polyaryletherketones (PAEKs) through their Glass Transitions.

      Dyson, C.J.; Priest, Martin; Fox, M.F.; Hopkins, B. (2016)
      Advanced engineering polymers of the Polyaryletherketone (PAEK) family with carbon fibre reinforcement are finding application in engineering systems as tribological bearing surfaces under severe operating conditions that cyclically move the polymer into and beyond the glass transition temperature region. To support such an application, the friction in high speed and low load PAEK-steel sliding contacts was investigated both unlubricated and lubricated with a trinonyl trimellitate ester, a base fluid for high temperature industrial lubricants. Four polymers in the PAEK family, PEEK, PEK, PEKEKK and PEKK, with 30%wt of carbon fibre whiskers were tested against an AISI 4140 steel disc. When unlubricated, low friction depended upon the formation of a PAEK transfer film on the steel disc and when this became unstable in the glass transition region the friction increased to much higher levels with associated polymer surface damage. Frictional heating due to the high sliding speed dominated the differences in glass transition behaviour between the four PAEKs. When lubricated, the lubricant film controlled friction and there was no significant effect of the glass transition of any of the PAEKs. The irreversible nature of the glass transition in PAEKs in such tribological applications, due to high surface damage at high temperature, means that it is essential to ensure effective lubrication in both fluid film and boundary lubrication.