Lubricant Flow in an Elastohydrodynamic Contact Using Fluorescence

Reddyhoff, T, Choo, J H, Spikes, H A and Glovnea, R P (2010) Lubricant Flow in an Elastohydrodynamic Contact Using Fluorescence. Tribology Letters, 38 (3). pp. 207-215. ISSN 1023-8883

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Abstract

It is well-documented that parameters, such as film thickness and temperature in EHL contacts, can be measured experimentally using a range of techniques include optical interferometry, ultrasonics, capacitance and infrared emission. Considerably less is known, however, about the flow of lubricant through such contacts. Information about lubricant flow would greatly benefit the prediction of friction in machine components. This article describes initial steps to develop fluorescence as a means of observing lubricant flow. An EHL contact was produced between a steel ball and a glass disc and viewed using a fluorescence microscope. The entrained lubricant was dyed using a fluorescent species, so that when illuminated with laser light, a fluorescence intensity map could be viewed. When the contact was fully flooded with dyed lubricant, the fluorescence intensity within the contact correlated well with optical interferometric film thickness measurements under the same conditions. This suggests useful possibilities for mapping film thickness in contacts where conventional optical methods are impractical, such as between rough surfaces and within soft contacts. In order to observe how lubricant flows in an EHL contact, fluorescer-containing lubricant was placed on the out-of-contact track. The boundary between fluorescent and non-fluorescent lubricant was then entrained into the contact and the passage of the boundary through the contact was monitored.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Engineering and Informatics > Engineering and Design
Depositing User: Romeo Glovnea
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:19
Last Modified: 02 Apr 2012 08:56
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/25467
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