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Tribological characterisation of a-C:H coatings at room temperature: Effect of counterbody material

: Klaffke, D.; Brand, J.; Brand, C.; Wittorf, R.


TriboTest 11 (2005), No.3, pp.213-232
ISSN: 1354-4063
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IST ()

Metal‐free amorphous carbon (a‐C:H) coatings with 15% hydrogen were deposited on bearing steel surfaces. The friction and wear performance of these specimens was characterised in oscillating sliding tests with a ball‐on‐flat geometry. Balls of four ceramic and four metallic materials were investigated in tests at room temperature. Special attention was paid to the effect of moisture by testing in dry, normal, and moist air. The effect of water vapour on the friction and wear of the a‐C:H coatings was quite different for the different counterbody materials. The wear was in all cases very low, with a coefficient of wear below 10⁻⁷ mm³/N m for most cases. The coefficient of friction was also very low, between 0.04 and 0.12 for most of the tests. The smallest wear and friction coefficients were found for oxide ceramics, while during tests against SiC and Si₃N₄ the coating was worn through during the test. The effects of counterbody material and the humidity of the surrounding air are discussed in terms of friction and wear mechanisms.