Date of Award


Publication Type

Doctoral Thesis

Degree Name



Mechanical, Automotive, and Materials Engineering


Applied sciences, Boundary/mixed lubrication, Inclinde impact-sliding test, Lubrication simulation, Metallurgical coating, Plasmas electrolytic oxidation


Hu, Henry




Metallurgical coatings have been widely used in the automotive industry from component machining, engine daily running to body decoration due to their high hardness, wear resistance, corrosion resistance and low friction coefficient. With high demands in energy saving, weight reduction and limiting environmental impact, the use of new materials such as light Aluminum/magnesium alloys with high strength-weight ratio for engine block and advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) with better performance in crash energy management for die stamping, are increasing. However, challenges are emerging when these new materials are applied such as the wear of the relative soft light alloys and machining tools for hard AHSS. The protective metallurgical coatings are the best option to profit from these new materials' advantages without altering largely in mass production equipments, machinery, tools and human labor. In this dissertation, a plasma electrolytic oxidation (PEO) coating processing on aluminum alloys was introduced in engine cylinder bores to resist wear and corrosion. The tribological behavior of the PEO coatings under boundary and starve lubrication conditions was studied experimentally and numerically for the first time. Experimental results of the PEO coating demonstrated prominent wear resistance and low friction, taking into account the extreme working conditions. The numerical elastohydrodynamic lubrication (EHL) and asperity contact based tribological study also showed a promising approach on designing low friction and high wear resistant PEO coatings. Other than the fabrication of the new coatings, a novel coating evaluation methodology, namely, inclined impact sliding tester was presented in the second part of this dissertation. This methodology has been developed and applied in testing and analyzing physical vapor deposition (PVD)/ chemical vapor deposition (CVD)/PEO coatings. Failure mechanisms of these common metallurgical hard coatings were systematically studied and summarized via the new testing methodology. Field tests based on the new coating characterization technique proved that this methodology is reliable, effective and economical.