Asperity level frictional interactions of cylinder bore materials and lubricant composition

Parasitic frictional losses in internal combustion engines of race vehicles adversely affect their performance. A significant proportion of these losses occur within the piston-cylinder system. This paper presents a study of the compatibility of cylinder bore surface materials with typical lubricant base constituent stock (Poly Alpha Olefin (PAO) and Polyolester (POE)) as well as a fully formulated lubricant. Nanoscale boundary friction is measured using lateral force microscopy. The effect of material properties, nanoscale roughness and lubricant species upon underlying mechanisms of generated friction is presented. Advanced cylinder materials and coatings and lubricant molecular species used for high performance engines are investigated, an integrated approach not hitherto reported in literature.