Technical Brief

Wear Characteristics of Medical Hearing-Aid Components and Friction Reduction Mechanisms

[+] Author and Article Information
Xu Song

Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology,
Singapore 637662
e-mail: xsong@SIMTech.a-star.edu.sg

Jiazhao Huang

School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering,
Nanyang Technological University,
50 Nanyang Avenue,
Singapore 639798
e-mail: huan0241@e.ntu.edu.sg

Seet Wei Leu

Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology,
Singapore 637662
e-mail: wlseet@simtech.a-star.edu.sg

Kun Zhou

School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering,
Nanyang Technological University,
50 Nanyang Avenue,
Singapore 639798
e-mail: kzhou@ntu.edu.sg

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Tribology Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF TRIBOLOGY. Manuscript received March 10, 2016; final manuscript received August 17, 2016; published online January 10, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Zhong Min Jin.

J. Tribol 139(3), 034504 (Jan 10, 2017) (4 pages) Paper No: TRIB-16-1080; doi: 10.1115/1.4034534 History: Received March 10, 2016; Revised August 17, 2016

The wear characteristics of a hearing-aid battery assembly, which consist of an acrylonitrile-butadiene-styren (ABS) button cell compartment and a stainless steel bracket with the locking knob, have been studied in the current work to predict its lifespan in service. The main failure mechanism is the worn-out of the cell compartment by the locking knob when changing the battery. Its wear rate is determined by the relationship between knob geometry and corresponding pressure distribution on the worn surface. Due to the third-body entrapment, the wear rate is highly influenced by the presence of the debris, and fortunately, it can be reduced by applying microsurface texture onto the knob. Experiments are conducted here to validate the wear reduction mechanism.

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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

(a) The edge of the wear track under load of 4 N and (b) the ridge formed by debris along the wear track under load of 8N

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

The surface features of the worn surface under load of 4N

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Dimensions for (a) circular tipped pin design and (b) circular micropores texture

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Potential worn zone could form along the trajectory of the knob during the on–off process

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Profiles of the micropores: (a) before the test and (b) after the test



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