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Title: Studies of frictional interface behaviour : experiments and modelling
Author: Mulvihill, Daniel Martin
ISNI:       0000 0004 2739 7001
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2012
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Predictive models of structures containing frictional joints presently suffer from poor descriptions of interface behaviour at the joints. This thesis aims to address this shortfall by furthering the physical understanding of parameters affecting interface behaviour such as friction and contact stiffness. Aspects of friction and contact stiffness relevant to the characterisation of fretting joints are investigated by a combined modelling and experimental approach. Friction and wear behaviour in gross-slip fretting are investigated by in-line and rotational fretting tests. New 3D topography parameters are found to be useful in the analysis of surfaces during fretting. Wear-scar shape is found to be dependent on material. A phenomenon whereby friction increases during the gross-slip phase of individual cycles is found to be due to wear-scar interaction primarily through the interference of local features distributed over the contact area. These features are similar in size to the applied fretting stroke. A simple model to explain the behaviour is put forward which shows that wear-scar shape determines the form of the friction variation. A finite-element (FE) model of the interaction of an elastic-plastic asperity junction is used to predict sliding friction coefficients. The modelling differs from previous work by: permitting greater asperity overlaps, enforcing an interface shear strength, and allowing material failure. The results are also used to predict friction coefficients for a stochastic rough surface. The magnitudes of the predicted friction coefficients are generally representative of experimental measurements. Results suggest that friction arises from both plasticity and tangential interface adhesion. Contact stiffness is studied for both fretting and non-fretting. A technique to isolate the true interface stiffness from results derived from load-deflection data is developed by comparing experimental and FE results. In the fretting wear case, comparison of tangential contact stiffness results in the literature with FE results reveals an interface whose compliance dominates the response to the extent that stiffness is proportional to contact area. In fretting tests such as this, wear debris is thought to be a factor contributing to high interface compliance. Non-fretting experiments performed here show that, at higher pressures, interface domination is reduced as the contact approaches the smooth case. Experiments are performed where contact stiffness is measured simultaneously by both ultrasound and digital image correlation. The effect of normal and tangential loading upon the contact stiffness (normal and tangential) is investigated. Experimental evidence showing that ultrasound measures an ‘unloading’ stiffness while DIC measures a ‘loading’ stiffness is obtained for the case of tangential loading where the ‘DIC stiffness’ decreases with increasing tangential load whereas the ‘ultrasound stiffness’ remains approximately constant. On average, ultrasound gives magnitudes 3.5 and 2.5 times stiffer than the DIC results for the normal and tangential stiffness cases, respectively. The difference in magnitudes can largely be physically explained, and is relatively small considering the significant differences between the techniques. Therefore, both methods can claim to give valid measurements of contact stiffness – though each has its own limitations which are outlined herein.
Supervisor: Nowell, David Sponsor: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Surface analysis ; Structure of interfaces ; Solid mechanics ; Mechanical engineering ; Materials engineering ; Aero engines ; Surface mechanical properties ; Surfaces ; Alloys ; Engineering & allied sciences ; Interfacial fenomena ; tribology ; friction ; contact stiffness