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Fabrication and electrical sliding wear of graphitic Cu–Cr–Zr matrix composites

Yongzhong Zhan and Jianmin Zeng


The present work was undertaken to prepare graphitic Cu–Cr–Zr matrix composites in order to develop new materials for application under sliding contact in an electrical field. The electrical sliding wear behavior of the graphite (Gr)/CuCrZr composite was investigated from a microstructural viewpoint, compared with the matrix alloy. The results indicate that by using the water atomized Cu–Cr–Zr powder and copper-coated graphite particles as starting materials, compact and homogeneous microstructure can be obtained in the composites. Fine and coherent particulate precipitations are formed in the Cu–Cr–Zr matrix during the aging treatment process, which help to improve the mechanical properties. Under the electrical sliding wear condition, incorporation of graphite in the Cu–Cr–Zr matrix not only decrease the wear loss of the sliding pair but also maintain steady-state friction coefficient. The main reason is that the graphite film that smears on the contacting surfaces can alleviate materials loss induced by electric arc discharge and adhesion wear. Proper aging treatment helps to make full use of the solid lubricant effect of the graphite particles.

2 Correspondence address: Dr. Yongzhong Zhan, Institute of Materials Science, School of Physics Science and Engineering Technology, Guangxi University, Nanning, Guangxi 530004, P. R. China, Tel.: +867713233530, Fax: +867713233530. E-mail:


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Received: 2005-04-08
Accepted: 2005-08-21
Published Online: 2013-03-01
Published in Print: 2006-02-01

© 2006, Carl Hanser Verlag, München