The refrigeration industry has shown an inclination towards the use of carbon dioxide (CO2) as a refrigerant in some applications. While extensive thermodynamic studies exist, tribological studies with CO2 are limited and tribological testing has further been restricted to low environmental pressures up to 1.38 MPa (200 psi) due to limitations in equipment capabilities. In this work, experiments were performed using an Ultra High Pressure Tribometer (UHPT) that was custom designed and built for tribological testing of compressor contact interfaces at very high environmental pressures up to 13.8 MPa (2000 psi). These tests demonstrate the possibility of testing at very high pressures similar to the internal pressures of CO2 compressors.

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