Surface charging, discharging and chemical modification at a sliding contact

Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article – Annual report year: 2012

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Electrostatic charging, discharging, and consequent surface modification induced by sliding dissimilar surfaces have been studied. The surface-charge related phenomena were monitored by using a home-built capacitive, non-contact electrical probe, and the surface chemistry was studied by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The experiments were performed on the disk surface of a ball-on-rotating-disk apparatus; using a glass disk and a Teflon (polytetrafluoroethylene) ball arrangement, and a polyester disks and a diamondlike carbon (DLC) coated steel ball arrangement. The capacitive probe is designed to perform highly resolved measurements, which is sensitive to relative change in charge density on the probed surface. For glass and Teflon arrangement, electrical measurements show that the ball track acquires non-uniform charging. Here not only the increase in charge density, but interestingly, increase in number of highly charged regions on the ball track was resolved. Threefold increase in the number of such highly charged regions per cycle was detected immediately before the gas breakdown-like incidences compared to that of other charge/discharge incidences at a fixed disk rotation speed. We are also able to comment on the behavior and the charge decay time in the ambient air-like condition, once the sliding contact is discontinued. XPS analysis showed a marginal deoxidation effect on the polyester disks due to the charging and discharging of the surfaces. Moreover, these XPS results clearly indicate that the wear and friction (sliding without charging) on the surface can be discarded from inducing such a deoxidation effect.
© 2012 American Institute of Physics

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Publication date2012
Volume111
Issue8
Pages083501
Number of pages8
ISSN0021-8979
DOIs
StatePublished

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Copyright (2012) American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics.

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