This paper presents a mathematical model for piston skirts in mixed lubrication. It takes into account the effects of surface waviness, roughness, piston skirt surface profile, bulk elastic deformation and thermal distortion of both piston skirts and cylinder bore on piston motion, lubrication and friction. The corresponding computer program developed can be used to calculate the entire piston trajectory and the hydrodynamic and contact friction forces as functions of crack angle under engine running conditions. This paper is the first part of a series of two papers. It gives basic information and some preliminary results. The second part will include the major results and discussions, focused on the influences of elastic and thermal deformations.

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