Elastohydrodynamic lubrication (EHL) is critically essential to minimize engine wear at low engine start up speeds. During the normal engine operations at medium to high speeds, non-Newtonian characteristics of multigrade engine lubricants enhance engine life by preventing adhesive wear. By incorporating viscoelastic effects of a non-Newtonian lubricant and focusing on different low engine start up speeds, this study models EHL fluid flow in the initial engine start up conditions. A 2-D non-Newtonian piston skirts lubrication model and analysis at the time of engine start up is presented based on the upper convected Maxwell viscoelastic model. The analysis of a non-Newtonian lubricant between piston and cylinder liner by using characteristic lubricant relaxation times in all order of magnitude analysis is done by using a perturbation method. The EHL film profile is predicted by solving the two-dimensional Reynolds equation using the inverse solution technique and the finite difference computational method in the fully flooded lubrication conditions. At different low engine start up speeds, the effect of viscoelasticity on lubricant velocity and pressure fields is examined and the influence of film thickness on lubricant characteristics is investigated. Numerical simulations show that piston eccentricities, EHD pressures and film thickness profiles are functions of low range of engine start up speeds. This study suggests that the initial engine start up speed at low range can be optimized as viscoelasticity produces a beneficial effect on piston skirt lubrication in the initial engine start up.

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