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Lubricating performances of graphene oxide and onion-like carbon as water-based lubricant additives for smooth and sand-blasted steel discs

  • Fenghua SuEmail author
  • Guofu Chen
  • Ping Huang
Open Access
Research Article


Graphene oxide (GO) nanosheets and onion-like carbon (OLC) nanoparticles were synthesized from natural graphite powder and candle soot, respectively, and characterized by transmission electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy. The lubricating performances of GO and OLC as lubricant additives in water were comparatively evaluated using a ball-on-disc tribometer. The effects of sand blasting of a steel disc on its morphology and tribological property were evaluated. The results show that the two nanomaterials, GO and OLC, when used as lubricant additives in water effectively reduce the friction and wear of the sliding discs, which is independent of the disc surface treatment. On applying heavy loads, it is observed that GO exhibits superior friction-reducing and anti-wear abilities compared to those of OLC—a trace amount of GO can achieve a lubricating ability equivalent to that of an abundant amount of OLC. Furthermore, it is observed that sand blasting cannot improve the wear resistance of the treated steel disc, even though the hardness of the disc increased after the treatment. The possible anti-wear and friction-reducing mechanisms of the GO and OLC as lubricant additives in water are discussed based on results for the wear surfaces obtained by scanning electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy


graphene oxide onion-like carbon lubricant additive friction and wear 



The authors are grateful to the financial support of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 21473061), the Guangdong Natural Science Funds for Distinguished Young Scholar (No. 2015A030306026), and the Science and Technology Planning Project of Guangzhou City (No. 201707010055).


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Mechanical and Automotive EngineeringSouth China University of TechnologyGuangzhouChina

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