Effects of Interfacial Bonding on Friction and Wear at Silica/Silica Interfaces

A Li and Y Liu and I Szlufarska, TRIBOLOGY LETTERS, 56, 481-490 (2014).

DOI: 10.1007/s11249-014-0425-x

Static friction between amorphous silica surfaces with a varying number of interfacial siloxane (Si-O-Si) bridges was studied using molecular dynamic simulations. Static friction was found to increase linearly with the applied normal pressure, which can be explained in the framework of Prandlt-Tomlinson's model. Friction force was found to increase with concentration of siloxane bridges, but with a decreasing gradient, with the latter being due to interactions between neighboring siloxane bridges. In addition, we identified atomic-level wear mechanisms of silica. These mechanisms include both transfer of individual atoms accompanied by breaking interfacial siloxane bridges and transfer of atomic cluster initialized by rupturing of surface Si-O bonds. Our simulations showed that small clusters are continually formed and dissolved at the sliding interface, which plays an important role in wear at silica/silica interface.

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