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Design and manufacture an autonomous brush plating system capable of repairing damaged coating for worn out component
Group Members
Danielle Rowe, Lahiru Lokuwithana, Mohd Ashraf Bin Sallehudin, Muhammad Amirul Bin Zahari, Malcolm Aaron Bin Vincent Buyun, Toby Fuller
Dr Shuncai Wang, Dr Zheng Jiang, Professor John Atkinson
Currently the UK economy loses approximately £24 billion annually due to friction, wear, lubrication and surface contact. Low-friction coatings can be used to reduce the negative effects of friction and improve efficiency and effectiveness of mechanical processes. In some applications the use of liquid lubricant is unsuitable, thus solid lubricants are often implemented. Molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) is a nano-particle with low friction properties. MoS2 particles are conductive and inhomogeneity is introduced into coatings containing these particles.

The aim of the project was to design, build and test a device that can semi-automatically carry out the process of brush electroplating in a repair capacity. Vibration was used in an attempt to improve the deposition of MoS2 and the metal matrix. This was supported by a thorough investigation into the creation of low friction coatings that would be viable for use in applications where liquid lubricants are unsuitable.

Samples were prepared using conventional electroplating techniques, in a laboratory environment, to provide baseline results and to allow investigation into different coating solutions. On completion of the design and build process, coatings were deposited using the brush device. Coating samples, from both techniques as well as repairs carried out using the brush device, were subjected to a range of tests to enable characterisation and comparison. Analysis was carried out using the TE-77 and SEM, as well as hardness testing.
Prototype testing
Prototype testing