Nanoparticle lubricant additives applied in a CNC lathe ball screw component for improving the quality of machined workpieces: A case study

Laura Peña-Parás, Demófilo Maldonado-Cortés, Martha Rodríguez-Villalobos, Alexis Sauceda, Irma Jocelyn Aguilar, Jorge Arturo Villanueva, Patricio Armando Cárdenas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


A lathe ball screw is a mechanical actuator that translates rotational motion to linear motion. These machine elements are lubricated to reduce friction and wear since they can affect dimensions of the machined workpiece, measured by C p and C pk process capability indicators, and the number of equipment shutdowns. In this work, different nanoparticles (NPs) were added to a commercial lubricant for machine tool slideways with the purpose of reducing coefficient of friction (COF) and wear. NPs of SiO 2, CaCO 3 and montmorillonite clay (MMT) were added to the lubricant in concentrations on 0.01 and 0.05 wt%. Four ball tests performed under scuffing conditions showed that the best concentration was 0.01 wt% for all NPs, with improvements in load-carrying capacity of 13–15%. Higher concentrations resulted in agglomeration and these large NP clusters were not able to infiltrate the contact area to reduce friction and wear. Block-on-ring tests showed that 0.01 wt% MMT reduced wear and COF by 83% and 81%, respectively. Finally, machining tests were performed in a CNC lathe with the 0.01 wt% MMT nanolubricant for the ball screw component. Improvement was measured by keeping track of the dispersion of the workpiece dimensions, the process capability indicators C p and C pk and the number of equipment shutdowns for adjustments. The addition of MMT NPs to the lubricant improved C p and C pk by 34% and 52%, indicating a lower variation on the work piece measurements. Furthermore, equipment shutdowns were reduced by up to 50%, improving the process efficiency and lowering manufacturing costs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number204752
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Authors acknowledge the support from Universidad de Monterrey grant number UIN 20533 and UIN 21523, and the support of PLOMAQ for their contribution to this work.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier B.V.


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