Environmental regulation and high fuel cost are among the leading driving forces behind the demand of energy efficient vehicles. Together with new engine hardware technologies, engine oil is expected to significantly contribute to improving vehicle fuel economy. New fuel-efficient engine oils are often formulated with advanced additives and low viscosity base oils. Understanding the lubrication performance at key engine components such as the cam and follower in valve train systems becomes critically important to ensure engine durability with the new fuel-efficient low viscosity oils. A full numerical mixed lubrication analysis of the cam and roller follower pair is conducted using the three dimensional line contact mixed elastohydrodynamic lubrication (EHL) model. The results show significant effects of surface roughness, topography, slide-to-roll ratio, and viscosity grade on lubricant film, contact pressure, and subsurface stress.

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