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Experimental analysis of the wear of rubber against harder materials in reciprocating motion




Zhao, Yang

Type of Degree

Master's Thesis


Mechanical Engineering


This work investigated the wear performance of rubber when contacted against harder composite materials through experimental analysis. The focus of this thesis was to find the optimal type of rubber and the composite material. Different kinds of rubber including SBR/NR mix, 60 duro, SBR/NR mix, 80 duro, Butyl, 50 duro and 100% NR, 65 duro are used. Various composite materials such as Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP) were also used. The experiments were performed using a pin on disk set up of UMT-3 at the loads and speeds that are in the boundary lubrication regime under air, water and slurry. Preliminary tests will be conducted to find a combination of load and speed that results in a measurable amount of wear in a reasonable amount of time. Surface metrology were performed using a precision stylus profilometer. Wear of rubber was measured based on the wear volume, average wear depth without cracks and max wear depth with or without cracks. In order to thoroughly characterize the mechanism of the rubber wear, an indention test without sliding was conducted to compare with the sliding tests. In addition, wear of the opposite composite materials were analyzed according to the weight lost and surface roughness change before and after each slurry test. Based on the results, it showed that the Butyl, 50 duro rubber had the best anti-wear performance. And the optimal contact pair can be put forward for evaluating possible design improvements, including the use of alternative materials.