Wear and Friction Characteristics of AlN/Diamond-Like Carbon Hybrid Coatings on Aluminum Alloy
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The use of diamond-like carbon (DLC) coatings has the potential to greatly improve the wear resistance and friction of aluminum alloys, but practical application has so far been limited by poor adhesion due to large difference in hardness and elasticity between the two materials. This study investigates the deposition of DLC onto an Al-alloy using an intermediate AlN layer with a graded hardness to create a hybrid coating. By controlling the hardness of the AlN film, it was found that the wear life of the DLC film could be improved 80-fold compared to a DLC film deposited directly onto Al-alloy. Furthermore, it was demonstrated through finite element simulation that creating a hardness gradient in the AlN intermediate layer reduces the distribution of stress in the DLC film, while also increasing the force of adhesion between the DLC and AlN layers. Given that both the DLC and AlN films were deposited using the same unbalanced magnetron sputtering method, this process is considered to represent a simple and effective means of improving the wear resistance of Al-alloy components commonly used within the aerospace and automotive industries.
Keywordsaluminum alloy aluminum nitride (AlN) diamond-like carbon (DLC) unbalanced magnetron sputtering (UBMS) wear resistance
This work was supported by JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research(C) Number 25420005.
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