Tribosystem Analysis: A Practical Approach to the Diagnosis of Wear Problems, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Tribosystem Analysis

A Practical Approach to the Diagnosis of Wear Problems, 1st Edition

By Peter J. Blau

CRC Press

192 pages | 12 Color Illus. | 70 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Hardback: 9781498700504
pub: 2016-05-12
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315371948
pub: 2017-12-19
from $28.98

FREE Standard Shipping!


Tribosystem Analysis: A Practical Approach to the Diagnosis of Wear Problems provides a systematic framework for conducting root cause analyses and categorizing various types of wear. Designed specifically for engineers without formal training in tribology, this book:

  • Describes a number of direct and indirect methods for detecting and quantifying wear problems
  • Surveys different microscopy techniques, including those for light optics, electron optics, and acoustic imaging
  • Discusses the selection of wear and friction test methods, both standard and custom, identifying possible pitfalls for misuse
  • Presents practical examples involving complex materials and environments, such as those with variable loads and operating conditions
  • Uses universally accepted terminology to create consistency along with the potential to recognize similar problems and apply comparable solutions

Complete with checklists to ensure the right questions are asked during diagnosis, Tribosystem Analysis: A Practical Approach to the Diagnosis of Wear Problems offers pragmatic guidance for defining wear problems in the context of the materials and their surroundings.


"… an extremely methodical and comprehensive approach for addressing tribological issues. … an excellent reference."

—Donald Smolenski, Evonik Oil Additives USA, Inc., Grosse Pointe, Michigan

"Peter Blau has the ability to take the sometimes hopelessly complex and sort it out into a very logical pattern that can be readily understood. This is another book of his that does that. … This book reviews the types of wear and various tools available to detect it and then elegantly describes an analysis regiment to make sense of the collected data. This is followed by several real-world problems that were resolved by the methodology."

—Robert M. Gresham, Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers (STLE), Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

"The book concentrates on a clear, practical, comprehensive interpretation of how wear- or friction-related technical problems arise and what methods can be used to identify and observe wear. Blau is well known in the wear community, most recently as the coeditor of Wear, one of the leading journals in the field. The highlight of the book is the development of tribosystem analysis, an engineering approach used to interpret evidence of wear. In the engineering world, friction and wear are omnipresent problems that all engineers have to address. This book can be read by an engineer with an undergraduate or an associate’s degree and, preferably, a few years of experience. The book concentrates mostly on metals and less on brittle materials, such as glasses, ceramics, coatings, and polymers. Wear is obviously detrimental, but, from the point of view of material removal, it is an important manufacturing approach, for example in grinding, finishing, and polishing. Such intended material removal aspects are not included in the book. The references at the conclusion of each chapter, though not exhaustive, are an excellent starting point to delve further into the subject."

CHOICE, January 2017

"The book describes with high quality the systematic approach to wear analysis and problem definition. It includes examples to illustrate some of cases of wear science and engineering. The book was designed also for engineers without formal training in tribology. This book can be used in undergraduate courses or as a subject on tribosystem analysis at the postgraduate level. Also, this book can serve as a useful reference for a diversity of professionals, with a special emphasis to academics, researchers, engineers (for example, mechanical, materials, and physics), that are working in the field of tribosystem analysis."

International Journal of Surface Science and Engineering, Vol. 10, No. 6, 2016

"Dr. Peter Blau has done it again with another important book for those of us who work in the broad world of tribology, lubrication engineering and lubrication maintenance. His new book, Tribosystem Analysis: A Practical Approach to the Diagnosis of Wear Problems, is a short methodical description of the process for properly diagnosing wear problems, just as the title implies. It is appropriate for literally everyone in our field from senior undergraduates, graduate students, researchers and practitioners from the lubricant producers through to end-users responsible for plant operations. With this well-written book Peter takes the sometimes seemly, hopelessly complex world of wear and sorts it into a very logical pattern that can—at least conceptually—be readily understood by almost anyone."

TLT Magazine, September 2016

"When a book is published by anyone of Blau’s status, expectations are high. I believe the book achieves the stated goals and exceeds them. The book is clearly written so anyone with a technical background can understand and benefit greatly from the material when faced with a wear issue."

Lubes’n’Greases, May 2017

"The strength of the book lies in its practical usefulness. There are many books describing surface damage, including wear mechanisms, in detail but not many books are presented in such a concise form. The author made a real effort to synthesize the often complex information that is available on wear and to present it in an easily understandable form without compromising quality. In addition, the author somehow managed to sort out the numerous and often confusing nomenclature on wear and explained frequently used abbreviations. This was a monumental task. This book summarizes most knowledge on wear and surface damage and shows the reader how to use this information to achieve practical goals. The author has succeeded admirably in producing a concise text for engineers working in the real world, trying to fix real wear problems."

Tribology Letters, December 2017

Table of Contents

What Is a Tribosystem?


How Wear Problems Reveal Themselves

Direct and Indirect Indications of Wear and Friction Problems

Visual Inspection and Surface Imaging

Vibration Monitoring and Acoustic Emission

Motor Current Signature Analysis

Oil Analysis

Radionuclide Wear Detection



Types of Surface Damage and Wear

Types of Surface Damage

Types and Characteristics of Wear

Material Dependence of Wear Patterns and Surface Appearance

Wear Transitions

Wear Diagnosis by Multiple Attributes in Context

Appendix: Wear Nomenclature and Nomenclature Families

Appendix: Resources for the Analysis of Wear Problems


Tools for Imaging and Characterizing Worn Surfaces

Light Optical Microscopy

Stylus Profiling and Noncontact Topographic Imaging

Scanning and Transmission Electron Microscopy

Nontraditional Imaging Methods


The Tribosystem Analysis Form

Overview of the TSA Form

Further Explanation of the Entries in the TSA Form

The Value of Missing Information

Tailoring the TSA to Practical Problems


Wear Problem Solving—The Next Steps

Options for Wear Problem Solving

Purposes for Tribotesting and the Kinds of Information Such Tests Can Provide

TSA Matching—Field versus Laboratory

Wear Testing to Meet Specifications—Some Potential Pitfalls


About the Author

Peter J. Blau, PhD, is currently the co-editor-in-chief of Wear journal and a consultant in tribology. He earned BS and MS degrees in metallurgy and materials science from Lehigh University (Bethlehem, Pennsylvania) and a PhD in metallurgical engineering from The Ohio State University (Columbus). His professional career began as a coinvestigator under NASA’s lunar sample examination program. Since then, he has spent nearly 40 years in basic and applied research and has held positions at the U.S. Air Force Materials Laboratory, the National Institute for Standards and Technology, the U.S. Office of Naval Research, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. A long-standing contributor to the International Conferences on Wear of Materials, he is a past conference chair and editor of several proceedings volumes. In 2011, the Wear of Materials Steering Committee established the Peter J. Blau Best Poster Award to be presented at each conference. Dr. Blau’s work has earned his election as a fellow of three societies: ASM International, ASTM International, and the STLE. He also coholds several patents and R&D 100 Awards. In addition to this book, Dr. Blau has authored or coauthored books on microindentation hardness, friction, and wear. In the early 1990s, he worked with ASM International to develop the first ASM Metals Handbook volume devoted to friction, wear, and lubrication. Since 1979, he has participated in ASTM Committee G02 on Wear and Erosion, serving two terms as its chairman and also as chairman of Subcommittee G02.91 on Terminology. In addition, he has led and participated in the development of four standard test methods. Dr. Blau served as leader of the Tribology Research User Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and as a principal investigator for more than 26 years. Since leaving Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 2013, he has been active in technical editing, writing, and consulting.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings: