Statistical analysis of wear of biplanar deterministically-arrayed surfaces for load bearing applications

W. J. Leachman, H. Li, T. J. Flynn, L. S. Stephens, C. A. Trinkle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The use of microscale deterministic surface features has been investigated in many bearing and seal applications in recent research. This paper considers a class of surface textures that are comprised of periodic arrays of deterministic geometric shapes created using photolithography-based manufacturing processes. These features are unique in that they can be modeled as biplanar: the topography of the entire surface ideally lies on one of two parallel horizontal planes. A total of eight such surface textures are analyzed: three comprised of electroplated nickel cavities and five comprised of metal-impregnated polymer asperities. It is shown that for this class of surface textures, closed form solutions for perfectly-manufactured surfaces exist for eleven areal surface parameters-including amplitude (Sa, Sq, St and Sz), spatial (Ssk, Sku and Std) and functional (Sbi, Sci and Svi)-and these are derived and presented for each case. These surface parameters are then used to evaluate manufacturing process errors for the surface textures and to quantify and evaluate the impact of wear on the performance of such surface textures when placed in a tribological application, in this case a radial lip seal. In particular it was found that useful correlations exist between the surface parameters of Sq and Svi and the operating torque in the lip seal application.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-148
Number of pages12
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Mar 15 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors wish to thank the Army Research Office for partial support of this research under grant number DAAD 19-02-1-0198 ; this technology was also supported in part by an award from the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development, Office of Commercialization and Innovation , under the grant agreement KSTC-184-512-12-122 with the Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation and by the National Institute of Standards and Technology under Grant SB1341-11-SE-0864 . The authors also wish to thank Zygo Corporation, the University of Kentucky Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CeNSE) , and the University of Kentucky Department of Mechanical Engineering for partial support of this work.


  • Deterministic microscale features
  • Radial lip seal
  • Sliding wear
  • Surface analysis
  • Surface topography
  • Wear testing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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