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The automotive connector: the influence of powering and lubricating a fretting contact interface

Record type: Article

The increasing amount of telematic and other electronic systems in the modern motor vehicle demands higher performance and reliability in ever decreasing space. Over many years, connector technology has advanced but is still regarded as the weak link in the reliability chain. Fretting corrosion is thought to be the main failure mechanism causing intermittent high contact resistance.

A low-frequency fretting apparatus is used in this study to induce fretting corrosion on contact samples. Low frequency is used to simulate the effect caused by different thermal expansion of connector components. Powering the contact interface under these fretting conditions delays the onset of high contact resistance. Joule heating is expected to accelerate surface oxidation, but electrical breakdown of films dominated at the levels studied (2 A, 12 V open circuit). Lubricating the interface also improves performance which is shown to be due to at least three contact enhancement mechanisms: wear reduction, oxidation retardation and improved debris dispersal.

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Citation

Swingler, J. (2000) The automotive connector: the influence of powering and lubricating a fretting contact interface Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part D: Journal of Automobile Engineering, 214, (6), pp. 615-23. (doi:10.1243/0954407001527484).

More information

Published date: 2000

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 21457
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/21457
ISSN: 0954-4070
PURE UUID: 40a52b1f-af48-4b78-8658-bde021f261c8

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 20 Aug 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 16:26

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