Shear Stresses Below Asperities in Hertzian Contact as Measured by Photoelasticity

[+] Author and Article Information
R. L. Leibensperger

The Timken Co., Canton, Ohio

T. M. Brittain

The University of Akron, Akron, Ohio

J. of Lubrication Tech 95(3), 277-283 (Jul 01, 1973) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3451803 History: Received April 24, 1972; Online October 18, 2010


The effect of surface roughness on shear stresses below the surface of an unlubricated Hertzian contact is analyzed using a three dimensional stress freezing photoelastic technique. The shear stresses in the micro-Hertzian contact in each asperity are shown to combine and form, at a greater depth below the surface, shear stresses generally associated with contact stress theory. These macro-Hertzian stresses are compared with the micro-Hertzian stresses in the asperities. The results are also correlated with an existing asperity contact theory and are discussed in relation to the contact fatigue phenomenon.

Copyright © 1973 by ASME
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