University of Cambridge > > Physics and Chemistry of Solids Group > Scratching the surface: Measuring the wear and frictional response of surfaces

Scratching the surface: Measuring the wear and frictional response of surfaces

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Wear and friction are key attributes of materials that can make major differences to their application in industry and in everyday life. Wear causes major losses through premature failures and loss of function that have been estimated to account for 2% of GDP . Friction needs to be the correct value for a particular application; as high as possible for footwear and as low as possible to improve efficiency for bearings in internal combustion engines. Reduction of wear and control of friction are therefore key to ensuring that the best possible performance can be achieved from materials. This talk will illustrate how the measurements at NPL have contributed to an understanding of how materials behave in tribological (wear and friction) applications. After a brief introduction describing wear and friction, the talk will focus on the development of techniques that provide a deeper understanding of the mechanisms that occur in the wear of materials, and on the effect of test parameters such as the test environment including humidity and machine dynamics. Results will also be presented on the development of methods to investigate the wear behaviour of WC/Co tool materials.

This talk is part of the Physics and Chemistry of Solids Group series.

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