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Research Papers: Friction and Wear

The Effect of Selected Grease Components on the Wear Behavior of Grease-Lubricated Gears

[+] Author and Article Information
Hansjörg Schultheiss, Thomas Tobie, Karsten Stahl

Gear Research Center (FZG),
Institute of Machine Elements,
Technische Universität München (TUM),
Garching D-85748, Germany

Contributed by the Tribology Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF TRIBOLOGY. Manuscript received May 18, 2015; final manuscript received August 3, 2015; published online September 7, 2015. Assoc. Editor: George K. Nikas.

J. Tribol 138(1), 011602 (Sep 07, 2015) (9 pages) Paper No: TRIB-15-1161; doi: 10.1115/1.4031278 History: Received May 18, 2015; Revised August 03, 2015

For gears that are operated at slow speeds, wear is often the failure mode that limits gear lifetime. Gears running at slow speeds are often lubricated with grease. The composition of the grease has a significant effect not only on gear lifetime but also on lubrication costs. Therefore, the selection of a suitable grease for a given gear application requires a good knowledge of its expected performance in regard to wear. In order to better understand the wear behavior of gears lubricated with grease, an understanding of the influence that different grease components, e.g., base oil type and viscosity, thickener type, additive type, and solid lubricants, have on gear wear behavior is important. In this paper, systematic investigations on the influence of different grease components on the wear behavior of slow running, case carburized gears were conducted using the FZG back-to-back gear test rig. The emphasis of the experimental work presented herein lies on the effect that the base oil viscosity and type, additive type, type of soap thickener, as well as the type and concentration of solid lubricants have on the gear wear behavior at low pitch line velocities. The investigations showed that the base oil type and viscosity only have a slight effect on gear wear behavior under boundary lubrication conditions. However, the thickener type and especially the additive type as well as the solid lubricant type significantly affect the wear behavior of gears running at slow speeds and lubricated with grease.

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Copyright © 2016 by ASME
Topics: Wear , Lubricants , Gears , Viscosity
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References

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Modified FZG back-to-back gear test rig [7]

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Fig. 2

Overview of the test conditions of the modified slow-speed wear test for grease [11]

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Fig. 3

Exemplary tooth flank with severe wear marks at the end of the wear test [7,11]

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Fig. 4

Exemplary tooth flank with slight wear marks and a polished appearance at the end of the wear test [7,11]

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Fig. 5

Exemplary tooth flank with micropitting and slight wear marks at the end of the wear test [7,11]

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Fig. 6

Exemplary tooth flank with slight micropitting and slight wear marks at the end of the wear test [7,11]

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Fig. 7

Effect of the oil viscosity on gear wear

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Fig. 8

Effect of the grease base oil viscosity on gear wear

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Fig. 9

Effect of the type of additive package on gear wear

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Fig. 10

Effect of the thickener type on gear wear

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Fig. 11

Effect of the solid lubricant graphite on gear wear

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Fig. 12

Effect of the solid lubricant MoS2 on gear wear

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