Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 20, Issue 12, pp 4657–4680 | Cite as

Sliding friction and wear of structural ceramics

Part 1 Room temperature behaviour
  • J. Breznak
  • E. Breval
  • N. H. Macmillan


A study has been made of the unlubricated sliding friction and wear behaviour of various like and unlike combinations of four materials -sinteredα-SiC, graphitized SiC, siliconized SiC and a Y2O3-stabilized ZrO2 — in air at room temperature under dynamic conditions approximating the motion of a piston in the cylinder of an idling automotive engine. The steady state friction coefficientΜf is largely independent of the initial surface finish, but is in all cases unacceptably high (0.25 ⩽Μf ⩽ 0.50) for engine applications. When the running-in process involves smoothing of the wear surfaces, the coefficient of friction decreases asymptotically towards its steady state value; and when running-in involves roughening, this coefficient usually increases asymptotically as the wear surfaces develop their steady state topographies. Friction couples containing siliconized SiC were the only exceptions to this pattern of behaviour. In every case the high steady state friction is accompanied by considerable wear. The results suggest that ceramic components will not be used unlubricated in reciprocating situations.


Polymer Steady State Dynamic Condition Wear Surface Surface Finish 
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Copyright information

© Chapman and Hall Ltd. 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Breznak
    • 1
  • E. Breval
    • 1
  • N. H. Macmillan
    • 1
  1. 1.Materials Research LaboratoryPennsylvania State UniversityPennsylvaniaUSA

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