Failure Analysis and Prevention
This article focuses on the types of activities required for the resolution of wear problems. These include examining and characterizing the tribosystem; characterizing and modeling the wear process; obtaining and evaluating wear data; and evaluating and verifying the solution.
Wear, a form of surface deterioration, is a factor in a majority of component failures. This article is primarily concerned with abrasive wear mechanisms such as plastic deformation, cutting, and fragmentation which, at their core, stem from a difference in hardness between contacting surfaces. Adhesive wear, the type of wear that occurs between two mutually soluble materials, is also discussed, as is erosive wear, liquid impingement, and cavitation wear. The article also presents a procedure for failure analysis and provides a number of detailed examples, including jaw-type rock crusher wear, electronic circuit board drill wear, grinding plate wear failure analysis, impact wear of disk cutters, and identification of abrasive wear modes in martensitic steels.