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Ultralow wear PTFE and alumina composites: It is all about tribochemistry
University of Florida, USA.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2473-9171
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2015 (English)In: Tribology letters, ISSN 1023-8883, E-ISSN 1573-2711, Vol. 57, no 2, article id 4Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Over the last decade, researchers have explored an intriguing polymer composite composed of granular polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) 7C and alumina particles. This material is extraordinary because a very small amount of alumina additive (<5 wt%) decreased the wear rate of the PTFE composite by over four orders of magnitude. Previous studies have shown that this wear resistance was initiated and maintained by the formation of a stable, robust, and uniform polymeric transfer film on the surface of the countersample. Although its importance to this tribological system is clear, the transfer film itself has not been well understood. Careful spectroscopic analysis throughout the stages of transfer film development revealed that tribochemistry plays a major role in the significant wear rate reductions achieved in PTFE and alumina composites. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy reveal that PTFE chains break due to the mechanical stresses at the wear surface and, in the presence of oxygen and water in the ambient environment, produce carboxylic acid end groups. These carboxylic acid end groups can chelate to the exposed metal on the steel surface and nucleate the formation of the transfer film. The resulting thin and robust fluoropolymer transfer film protects the surface of the steel and changes the sliding interface from polymer on steel to polymer on polymer transfer film. These effects keep friction coefficients and wear rates low and stable. Ultimately, the real mechanisms responsible for the exceptional wear performance of these materials are all about the tribochemistry. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer New York LLC , 2015. Vol. 57, no 2, article id 4
Keywords [en]
Alumina, Carboxylic acid, Polytetrafluoroethylene, Tribochemistry, Tribofilms, Wear, Carboxylic acids, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, Friction, Interfaces (materials), Particles (particulate matter), Polymers, Spectroscopic analysis, Stresses, Tribology, Wear of materials, Wear resistance, X ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Ambient environment, Friction coefficients, Orders of magnitude, Polymer transfer films, Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), Tribo-chemistry, Tribological systems, Polytetrafluoroethylenes
National Category
Tribology (Interacting Surfaces including Friction, Lubrication and Wear)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-56340DOI: 10.1007/s11249-014-0445-6Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84931266314OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ri-56340DiVA, id: diva2:1591263
Available from: 2021-09-06 Created: 2021-09-06 Last updated: 2023-05-23Bibliographically approved

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Harris, Kathryn L

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