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Micromachines 2017, 8(4), 103;

Design and Construction of a Micro-Tribotester for Precise In-Situ Wear Measurements

Center for Nano-Wear, Yonsei University, Seoul 03722, Korea
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Yonsei University, Seoul 03722, Korea
Vehicle Technology Directorate, Army Research Laboratory, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21005, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Yunn-Lin Hwang and Nam-Trung Nguyen
Received: 1 February 2017 / Revised: 9 March 2017 / Accepted: 25 March 2017 / Published: 28 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microtribology, Adhesion and Surface Engineering)
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Extensive research efforts have been devoted to understand the complex mechanisms of wear with the aim to minimize wear in sliding systems. Improvements in the instruments used for the characterization of the wear phenomenon are required to enhance the effectiveness of research method. In this paper, we report the design of an experimental platform that enables in-situ observation of the surface topography evolution during the evaluation of the tribological behavior of surfaces in dry and lubricated conditions. Use of state-of-the-art components for surface topography measurement, planar positioning, and force sensing allowed for the improvement of sensitivity and resolution compared with the previously reported systems. The effectiveness of the tribotester was demonstrated through friction and wear tests performed using a stainless-steel ball and a silicon wafer coated with SiO2. It was found that transition of the wear mechanism from adhesive to abrasive wear took place when a significant amount of wear debris was formed as evidenced by the in-situ observation of removal of the coating and exposure of the Si substrate. The in-situ observation of wear phenomena enabled a robust and in-depth elucidation of wear mechanisms. View Full-Text
Keywords: in-situ examination; data acquisition; signal processing; friction; wear in-situ examination; data acquisition; signal processing; friction; wear

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Penkov, O.V.; Khadem, M.; Nieto, A.; Kim, T.-H.; Kim, D.-E. Design and Construction of a Micro-Tribotester for Precise In-Situ Wear Measurements. Micromachines 2017, 8, 103.

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