Chief objective of this article is to evaluate the role of sliding friction in gear dynamics, and more specifically the effect of the periodic variations in mesh stiffness, load distribution and friction torque during a mesh cycle. A non-unity speed ratio spur gear is considered. Only the torsional degree of freedom of the gear pair, with ideal Coulomb friction law, is analyzed. Previous studies by Vaishya and Singh [1–3] make idealized assumptions about temporal (or spatial) variation of mesh stiffness and load sharing in order to obtain more tractable analytical solutions. In our formulation, an accurate Finite Element/Contact Mechanics analysis code [4] is run in the static mode to compute the mesh stiffness and load distribution at every time instant of the mesh. The computed parametric variation of stiffness is then incorporated into our dynamic formulation that includes frictional torques. Next, we use appropriate numerical techniques to solve for the dynamic response in time domain. This study, though preliminary in nature, examines the effects of pinion speed, coefficient of friction and mean input torque. This, along with work in progress, should yield further insights into the role of friction sources in gear vibro-acoustics.

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