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Friction and wear of two polyethylenes under different tribological contact conditions

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Tom Joyce



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Sage Publications Ltd, 2021.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


© The Author(s) 2020. Tribological properties of ultrahigh-molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) and cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) were studied in two different wear modes. Firstly, reciprocating sliding wear studies under non-conformal contact investigated the effects of counterface surface roughness (polished, lapped and ground) of Ti6Al4V on the friction and wear of the polyethylenes. Secondly, two-body abrasive wear studies in conformal contact against different abrasive grit size papers were also carried out to ascertain the wear sensitivity of the polyethylenes under these adverse conditions. Wear mechanisms were studied using optical and scanning electron micrographs. The results of the reciprocating sliding wear studies showed that surface roughness of the counterface influenced friction and wear characteristics although no correlation was found between the coefficient of friction and specific wear rate. XLPE demonstrated wear sensitivity, particularly under severe abrasive wear condition. The results indicated that the performance of the polyethylenes greatly depends upon the tribological system under which it is operating.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Harsha AP, Wasche R, Joyce TJ

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Polymers and Polymer Composites

Year: 2021

Volume: 29

Issue: 5

Pages: 393-404

Print publication date: 01/06/2021

Online publication date: 21/04/2020

Acceptance date: 02/04/2018

Date deposited: 01/07/2020

ISSN (print): 0967-3911

ISSN (electronic): 1478-2391

Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd


DOI: 10.1177/0967391120920130


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