This paper presents an elastic-plastic asperity microcontact model for contact between two nominally flat surfaces. The transition from elastic deformation to fully plastic flow of the contacting asperity is modeled based on contact-mechanics theories in conjunction with the continuity and smoothness of variables across different modes of deformation. The relations of the mean contact pressure and contact area of the asperity to its contact interference in the elastoplastic regime of deformation are respectively modeled by logarithmic and fourth-order polynomial functions. These asperity-scale equations are then used to develop the elastic-plastic contact model between two rough surfaces, allowing the mean surface separation and the real area of contact to be calculated as functions of the contact load and surface plasticity index. Results are presented for a wide range of contact load and plasticity index, showing the importance of accurately modeling the deformation in the elastoplastic transitional regime of the asperity contacts. The results are also compared with those calculated by the GW and CEB models, showing that the present model is more complete in describing the contact of rough surfaces.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Surfaces and Interfaces
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films