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Lubricants 2017, 5(4), 41; doi:10.3390/lubricants5040041

Non-Uniform Laser Surface Texturing of an Un-Tapered Square Pad for Tribological Applications

Physics Department “M. Merlin”, CNR—Institute for Photonics and Nanotechnologies U.O.S. Bari, via Amendola 173, I-70126 Bari, Italy
Physics Department “M. Merlin”, Università degli Studi di Bari, via Amendola 173, I-70126 Bari, Italy
Department of Engineering for Innovation, Università del Salento, I-73100 Monteroni-Lecce, Italy
Department of Mechanics, Mathematics and Management, Politecnico di Bari, V.le Japigia 182, I-70126 Bari, Italy
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 September 2017 / Revised: 4 October 2017 / Accepted: 6 October 2017 / Published: 17 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Improvement of Friction and Wear by Laser Surface Texturing)
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Femtosecond laser surface micro-texturing has emerged as a promising technology to enhance the tribological properties of different kinds of electromechanical devices. In this research paper, we have exploited the intrinsic flexibility and micrometric accuracy of femtosecond laser ablation to realize complex micro-structural modifications on the surface of a laboratory prototype of a steel thrust bearing (un-tapered) pad. The Bruggeman Texture Hydrodynamics theory (BTH) is employed for the design of the anisotropic and non-uniform texture maximizing the thrust load of the pad prototype. The preliminary experimental results, reported in this work, show that the non-uniform micro-texture largely affects the friction characteristics of the contact. In particular, in agreement with the BTH predictions, the tribo-system shows friction properties that are strongly sensitive to the direction of the sliding speed, as a consequence of the micro-fluid dynamics which are designed to occur only in a specific sliding direction. We suggest that the joint action of virtual prototyping (BTH lubrication theory) and ultrafast laser micro-prototyping can lead to unconventional and impressive results in terms of enhanced or tailored contact mechanics properties of the generic lubricated tribopair. View Full-Text
Keywords: surface texturing; friction reduction; ultrafast laser; femtosecond laser ablation; Bruggeman texture hydrodynamics surface texturing; friction reduction; ultrafast laser; femtosecond laser ablation; Bruggeman texture hydrodynamics

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Ancona, A.; Joshi, G.S.; Volpe, A.; Scaraggi, M.; Lugarà, P.M.; Carbone, G. Non-Uniform Laser Surface Texturing of an Un-Tapered Square Pad for Tribological Applications. Lubricants 2017, 5, 41.

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