Friction and wear characteristics of ceramic nanocomposite coatings: Titanium carbide/amorphous hydrocarbon

Cao, D. M.; Feng, B.; Meng, W. J.; Rehn, L. E.; Baldo, P. M.; Khonsari, M. M.
July 2001
Applied Physics Letters;7/16/2001, Vol. 79 Issue 3
Academic Journal
Friction and wear characteristics of titanium-containing amorphous hydrocarbon (Ti–C:H) coatings were measured during unlubricated sliding against WC–Co. These Ti–C:H coatings consist of nanocrystalline TiC clusters embedded in an amorphous hydrocarbon (a-C:H) matrix, i.e., they are TiC/a-C:H nanocomposites. The elastic modulus and hardness of the coatings exhibit smooth variations with increasing Ti composition. In contrast, a relatively abrupt transition occurs in the friction coefficient and wear rate of the coatings over a relatively narrow (20–30 at. %) Ti composition range. Our results reveal bimodal friction and wear behaviors for the TiC/a-C:H nanocomposites, a-C:H like at Ti compositions below 20%, and TiC like at Ti compositions above 30%. The two different wear mechanisms that operate as the volume fraction of nanocrystalline TiC clusters changes are discussed. © 2001 American Institute of Physics.


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