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Wear, 126 (1988) 111 - 112 111

Book Review

Microstructure and Wear ofMaterials

edited by Karl-Heinz Zum Gahr; published by Elsevier, Amsterdam, 1987; 560 pp.;
price U.S. $142.25, Dfl. 320.00.

Microstructure influences the wear of materials in two general ways. It

indirectly affects wear by controlling, with deformation mechanism kinetics,
the macroscopic mechanical properties of a material, such as flow stress,
work hardening, fracture and fatigue. It can also directly affect wear on a
microscopic level through introducing material inhomogeneity on a scale of
the wear events. Both these aspects of microstructure are considered by
Zum Gahr in this tenth volume of the EZseuier Tribology Series, a materials
engineer’s view of wear.
The core chapters 5 to 8 deal successively with grooving wear (abrasion),
with sliding wear (dry sliding without abrasives), with poorly or unlubricated
rolling-sliding wear and with erosion. Each chapter is similarly structured:
an introductory survey of mechanisms, a consideration of macroscopic
effects such as hardness and toughness, followed by microscopic effects of
inclusions, second phases and matrix structures. The main emphasis is on the
wear of metals, entirely so in chapters 7 and 8, approximately 35 and 23
pages long respectively. Chapters 5 and 6 contain short sections on the wear
of polymers, ceramics and composites, 43 pages in 204 and 41 in 127
respectively. Polymers are not adequately dealt with, in comparison with
the wealth of detail on metals in this book and the coverage of these
materials in other recent books. However, the information on the less well-
documented ceramics and composites is worthwhile.
Chapter 5 on abrasion, reflecting the author’s own major contribution
to that subject, is undoubtedly the main reason for buying or borrowing this
book. It contains detailed theoretical models of and information on effects
on wear rates and mechanisms of microstructures, contact pressures and
abrasive size, shape and hardness; almost too much to take in unless one’s
reading is directed to a particular purpose. This and to a lesser extent chapter
6 on non-abrasive sliding wear are for readers with a specialist interest or
need. The overviews of chapters 6 and 7 could, by contrast, be readily rec-
ommended, for example, for more general student reading.
The first four chapters contain standard introductory material on
material structure/property relationships, contact mechanics and wear
process classification. As with the rest of the book, and particularly chapter
5, they are well and copiously illustrated with line diagrams and micrographs.
I have only three minor reservations. It is a pity the decision was taken
to limit the coverage mainly to dry wear situations: there are undoubtedly

0 Elsevier Sequoia/Printed in The Netherlands


microstructural effects in boundary-lubricated sliding which it would have

been interesting to include; the bulk of the experimental information
provided is from laboratory testing: it is not easy in the chapter on abrasion,
for example, to translate the information to practical applications; some of
the longer sections are difficult to take in. These should be treated more as
comment than criticism. Undoubtedly, the intended audience, strongly
interested in the effects of microstructure on wear, will gain much from
reading or referring to this book.

Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Bradford
West Yorkshire