A reduced-scale brake dynamometer for friction characterization

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Friction behavior is a critical factor in brake system design and performance. For up-front design and system modeling it is desirable to describe the frictional behavior of a brake lining as a function of the local conditions such as contact pressure, temperature, and sliding speed. Typically, frictional performance is assessed using brake dynamometer testing of full-scale hardware, and the average friction value is then used for the remaining brake system development. This traditional approach yields a hardware-dependent, average friction coefficient that is unavailable in advance of component testing, ruling out true up-front design and leading to redundant lining screening tests. To address this problem, a reduced-scale inertial brake dynamometer was developed to determine the frictional characteristics of lining materials. Design of a reduced-scale dynamometer began with the choice of a scaling relation. In this case, the energy input per unit contact area was held constant between full-scale and reduced-scale hardware. All linear variables were thereby scaled by the square root of the scaling factor, while the pressure, temperature, sliding velocity, and deceleration were kept constant. Experimental validation of the scaling relations and the reduced-scale dynamometer focused on comparisons with full-scale dynamometer data, particularly the friction coefficient. If similar trends are observed between reduced-scale and full-scale testing, the reduced-scale dynamometer will become an important tool in the up-front design and modeling of brake systems.

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© 2001 Elsevier. Publisher's version of record: https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0301-679X(01)00053-6

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Tribology International