Behavior of perfluoropolyalkylethers under simulated dynamic bearing conditions

Research paper by Hitesh K. Trivedi, Costandy S. Saba, Lisa C. Carswell, Lois J. Gschwender, Carl E. Snyder

Indexed on: 01 Sep '98Published on: 01 Sep '98Published in: Tribology Letters


Perfluoropolyalkylether (PFPAE) fluids are of interest to the United States Air Force as potential high temperature liquid lubricants in gas turbine engines. PFPAE fluids have desirable thermal and oxidative stability, and favorable temperature/viscosity characteristics. However, their performance depends on the specific base fluids, additives, bearing material used as well as contact conditions and environments. Screening tests using a modified ball‐on‐rod type rolling contact fatigue (RCF) tester were conducted to study the effects of the above variables and lubricant circulation on fatigue life, wear and performance of PFPAE. Post test lubricant samples were analyzed for changes in physical and chemical properties. Traditional testing for viscosity, acid number and weight changes was performed. Fluid degradation was studied using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), gas chromatography with atomic emission detector (GC‐AED) and supercritical fluid chromatography (SFC). Elemental analysis of the deposits formed at the tribocontact were determined by Auger electron spectroscopy (AES).