Effect of Wear on Performance and Reliability

  • Nam P. Suh
  • Nannaji Saka
Part of the Sagamore Army Materials Research Conference Proceedings book series (SAMC, volume 24)


Many systems consisting of an assembly of mechanical parts in relative motion fail due to the damage done to the sliding and rolling surfaces by wear. Failure of a system may be precipitated by just the dimensional loss caused by wear, or wear-induced fatigue and fracture of such machine elements as bearings, gears, and splines. The wear rate of mechanical systems rapidly increases as the wear debris accumulates, and as the lubricant breaks down due to both the increase in surface traction and the activation of new wear mechanisms. The sudden failure of machines may be prevented through on-line monitoring of the wear process, which may be accomplished by checking the density and the nature of the wear particles and the deterioration of the lubricant. To determine the cause of failure, the worn surface and the subsurface should be analyzed for damages. Reliability of machines can be increased by proper design of sliding surfaces (geometry and topography), proper selection and quality control of wear resistant materials, adequate provision for lubrication, proper sealing of the sliding components from the environment, and the filtration of wear debris.


Wear Rate Wear Surface Abrasive Wear Wear Mechanism Wear Particle 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nam P. Suh
    • 1
  • Nannaji Saka
    • 1
  1. 1.Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA

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