Wear predictive simulations

Wear is a frequent and hardly avoidable cause of damage of machine elements as well as of artificial human joints. Wear behaviour is usually investigated experimentally by standard or specific tests, which however require long times and economic efforts.

The possibility of predicting wear by numerical analyses is becoming an important alternative to experimental tests, useful for comparing design and materials in a design phase or for simulating hardly reproducible working conditions.

The Tribology group of the University of Pisa has a rather wide experience on wear models both with an analytical approach (Mathcad, Mathematica) and by means of FEM (Abaqus, Ansys).

A procedure exploiting submodeling to reduce computational cost has been recently developed (Fig.1).
Studies in this field have been focused to estimate wear in hip and shoulder implants, including the cross-shear effect for UHMWPE (Fig.2).

Fig.1 Pin on disc simulation: scheme, model detail, contact pressure evolution.
Fig.2 Example of analytical wear maps for different shoulder implant sizes, with two wear models.

Research group
Enrico Ciulli, Francesca Di Puccio, Lorenza Mattei

External collaborations:
AC2T research GmbH ( www.ac2t.at)


PRA 2015

Main publications:

  • Mattei and Di Puccio, Influence of the wear partition factor on wear evolution modelling of sliding surfaces. Intl J Mechl Sciences, 2015. 99:72-88.
  • Di Puccio and Mattei, A novel approach to the estimation and application of the wear coefficient of metal-on-metal hip implants. Trib Int, 2015. 83(0):69-76.
  • Mattei, Di Puccio, Ciulli, A comparative study on wear laws for soft-on-hard hip implants using a mathematical wear model. Trib Int, 2013. 63:66-77.
  • Curreli, Di Puccio, Mattei Application of the finite element submodeling technique in a single point contact and wear problem (2018) Int J Num Meth Eng, 116 (10-11), pp. 708-722.