Wear properties of induction hardened, conventional plasma nitrided and pulse plasma nitrided AISI 4140 steel in dry sliding conditions

B. Podgornik, J. Vižintin, V. Leskovšek

Wear 232 (1999) 231–242.


In our study, the friction and the wear behaviour of plasma and pulse plasma nitrided AISI 4140 steel was evaluated under dry sliding conditions, where hardened samples were used as a reference. The nitrided samples were fully characterised before and after the wear testing using metallographic, microhardness and surface examination techniques. After surface characterisation, dry sliding wear tests were performed on a pin-on-disc machine in which hardened ball bearing steel discs were mated to nitrided pins. The influence of sliding speed and contact load on the response of the surface treated pins was determined. The test results indicate, that the wear resistance of AISI 4140 steel can be improved by means of plasma and pulse plasma nitriding. However, compound layer should be removed from the nitrided surface to avoid impairment of the tribological properties by fracture of hard and brittle compound layer followed by the formation of hard abrasive particles.

Keywords: plasma nitriding, friction, wear, AISI 4140 steel

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