CUED Publications database

Elastohydrodynamic film thickness for shear-thinning lubricants

Greenwood, JA and Kauzlarich, JJ (1998) Elastohydrodynamic film thickness for shear-thinning lubricants. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part J: Journal of Engineering Tribology, 212. pp. 179-186. ISSN 1350-6501

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Mineral oils and synthetic lubricants that are thickened by polymers of large molecular weight are being promoted for automobiles as well as aircraft gas turbines. These multiweight lubricants are found to have a complicated Newtonian and non-Newtonian viscosity depending upon shear rate in the bearing. In general, polymer-thickened mineral oil lubricants show a first Newtonian behaviour at a low shear rate, shear-thinning non-Newtonian behaviour at a higher shear rate and a second Newtonian behaviour at a very high shear rate, with a second Newtonian viscosity approximately equal to the base oil viscosity. Because of high shear thinning in the inlet region of rolling element bearings, predicting the film thickness using the low shear rate first Newtonian viscosity can be in error, in particular examples, by a factor of 1/2 for mineral oil plus 4% methacrylate thickener and 1/7 for mineral oil plus 20% polybutene thickener. The case of naturally shear-thinning silicone fluids is analysed and it is shown that the elastohydrodynamic (EHD) film thickness is nearly the same for silicones with widely varying first Newtonian viscosity. A general EHD analysis for shear-thinning lubricants in pure rolling is presented and shown to agree with known special cases. A closed-form EHD equation for power law shear-thinning lubricants is derived, which gives very accurate results for a bearing where the inlet state of the rolling element falls in the region where the non-Newtonian viscosity is expected. A comparison with some published experimental results by Bair and Khonsari is presented. © IMechE 1998.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Div D > Geotechnical and Environmental
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 19 Jun 2020 21:21
Last Modified: 06 Aug 2020 11:59
DOI: 10.1243/1350650981541994