Development of Durable, Environmentally Friendly Process for Reconditioning Large-Bore Engine Power Cylinders
This paper presents the results of a multi-year investigation into unexplained and seemingly random scuffing failures of power cylinders in large-bore, integral-angle natural gas-fueled engines. The paper describes in detail the holistic failure analysis process the authors pursued to identify the cause of scuffing. A description of the metrological and metallurgical aspects of hard, non-chrome surfaces and the parameters that define a high-quality surface are defined and quantified. Scanning electron microscopy photographs as well as surface roughness profiles are shown and discussed with desirable and detrimental features shown and explained. The importance of the details of the installation and break-in process are discussed, as is how the source of many cylinder liner-scuffing failures may be traced to the installation procedures, which often neglect key aspects required for best possible piston ring seating, including the use of compatible and approved ring/cylinder combinations. The authors hope to leave readers with a basic understanding of the tribological conditions occurring within the power cylinder as well as the parameters used to characterize power cylinder surfaces. By using the information presented here, operations and maintenance personnel will be better equipped to compare alternative cylinder suppliers and technologies for cylinder Reconditioning using parameters other than cost.