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We describe a rolling contact tribometer exhibiting realistic, reproducible, quantifiable performance over a wide range of contact conditions. These conditions are variable to match a calculated severity integral for real ball bearing contacts. First-order kinematics in the tribometer are described by published ball bearing equations. The tribometer exhibits second-order mechanical contact effects found in real rolling contacts. It has elevated temperature, purged atmosphere, and vacuum capabilities. Results from the tribometer are shown to be directly applicable to a variety of situations in the real world.
rolling contact tribometer, boundary lubrication, solid film lubrication, elasto-hydrodynamic lubrication, lubricant life, lubricant degradation, contact severity, friction coefficient, traction coefficient
Interesting Rolling Contact, Walpole, Massachusetts
NASA-Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio