High frequency reciprocating sliding wear behavior and mechanisms were investigated at 25, 150 and 400°C for solid lubricant oxide coated carbon–carbon composites (CCC). Atomic layer deposition (ALD) was employed to infiltrate a trilayer nanolaminate coating of ZnO/Al2O3/ZrO2 into the porous CCC. The ALD coatings exhibited excellent conformality and pore-filling down to ~55μm into the CCC, which cannot be achieved by other coating techniques. Compared to uncoated CCC, ALD infiltration resulted in a 64% improvement in the wear rate to 1.5×10−6mm3/N·m at 25°C, while a 31% improvement was determined during 150°C sliding. Conversely, higher temperature sliding at 400°C resulted in increasing wear rates by an order of magnitude due to combined oxidation of the steel counterface and exposed CCC. Cross-sectional focused ion beam-transmission electron microscopy (FIB-TEM) studies of the worn surfaces were performed to elucidate the solid lubrication mechanisms. It was determined that a highly deformed composite surface tribolayer of nanolaminate coating and amorphous C was responsible for improved sliding wear compared to the uncoated CCC that just exhibited an amorphous C tribolayer. Inside the deformed composite tribolayer, a high density of near surface ZnO (0002) basal plane sliding/shear-induced stacking faults was observed in comparison to unworn ALD nanolaminates. Activating subsurface basal stacking faults in ALD ZnO promotes intrafilm shear/slip and hence improves wear resistance. The slip of partial dislocations results from a dislocation glide process along the ZnO (0002) basal planes. Thus, ALD ZnO/Al2O3/ZrO2 nanolaminate coatings are potential candidates for providing wear reduction from low to intermediate temperatures in moving mechanical assembles, such as CCC bushings that experience fretting-type wear.
Wear – Elsevier
Published: May 1, 2015
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