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    Friction-Induced Ignition in Oxygen

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    The friction-induced ignition of structural materials in oxygen has been investigated. A test arrangement has been designed that allows basic data for the oxidation reaction rate to be determined for various materials or pairs of materials. The rate at which oxidation energy is released at the rubbing interface is obtained from the difference in measured friction power necessary to produce the same interface temperatures in tests with oxygen and an inert gas. These results are then correlated by the Arrhenius rate law, allowing the oxidation reaction rate factors for the different materials to be determined.

    The theoretical simulation of the ignition process for the test arrangement using these data is in good agreement with the observed experimental results. This suggests that the geometry, ambient temperature, and gas velocity, which have a primary effect on heat dissipation are adequately taken into account by the theoretical model.

    In addition to the collection of these basic data, the test allows materials to be classified for oxygen compatibility under friction simply by means of comparing the axial load necessary for ignition. Of the pairs of materials tested, Monel was found to give the highest ranking, followed by stainless steel/cast iron and bronze. The propagation of combustion after ignition was smallest with Monel, followed by bronze, and was largest for stainless steel/cast iron.


    oxygen compatibility, friction test, Arrhenius parameters, ignition simulation, Monel, nodular cast iron, tin bronze, stainless steel, fire, flammability

    Author Information:

    Jenny, R
    Sulzer Brothers, Zurich,

    Wyssmann, HR
    Sulzer Brothers, Zurich,

    Committee/Subcommittee: G04.01

    DOI: 10.1520/STP35212S