Ball-on-Disc Tribometer's Protocol Development: Loss of Lubrication Evaluation

Report No. ARL-TR-7588
Authors: Mark R Riggs; Stephen P Berkebile; Nikhil K Murthy
Date/Pages: February 2016; 32 pages
Abstract: Loss of lubrication (LoL) protocol development consists of determining the proper parameters to simulate relevant gear-and-bearing contact conditions under starved lubrication. The goal is to evaluate the performance of materials and lubricants and ultimately improve the survivability of rotorcraft propulsion components under those starved-lubrication conditions. A ball-on-disc tribometer aids in discovering new solutions through experimentally simulating gear contacts at high-speed and high-load conditions with precise control over the operating conditions. These simulated gear contacts are used to investigate tribological properties of gear materials, surface finishes, coatings, and lubricants under starved-lubrication conditions. New materials that demonstrate superior performance during an LoL event are desirable to improve operational capabilities under severe lubrication conditions. This paper discusses a variety of methods to evaluate survivability and the development of an LoL-experiment protocol with a ball-on-disc tribometer. Study and experimentation of new oil-off protocols at the coupon level will contribute toward creating innovative solutions for an oil-off event with improved survivability to protect our Soldiers.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: February 1, 2016