You are on page 1of 5

Applied Mechanics and Materials Vols.

313-314 (2013) pp 174-178

(2013) Trans Tech Publications, Switzerland

Mechanical Properties and Morphology of Palm Slag, Calcium

Carbonate and Dolomite Filler in Brake Pad Composites

C.M. Ruzaidi1, a, H. Kamarudin1, b, J.B. Shamsul1, c, A.M. Mustafa Al Bakri1, d,

J. Liyana1, e
School of Material Engineering, Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP), P.O. Box 77, D/A Pejabat
Pos Besar, Kangar, Perlis, 01000, Malaysia

Keywords: Palm slag, Calcium Carbonate, Dolomite, Brake pad composite, Hardness, Wear rate

Abstract. The development of asbestos free brake pad composites using different fillers was
investigated with a intention to substitute asbestos which is known hazardous and carcinogenic.
Mechanical and morphology studies were made to clarify the mechanism for compressive strength,
hardness and wear rate behavior of different filler of brake pad which were prepared by
compression molding of mixture of filler (palm slag, calcium carbonate and dolomite) with phenolic
as binder, metal fiber as reinforcement, graphite as lubricant and alumina as abrasive. The result
showed that palm slag has significant potential to use as filler material in brake pad composite. The
wear rate of palm slag composite was comparable with the conventional asbestos based brake pad.
The result also supported by SEM micrograph.

Automotive brake systems consist of a pair of metallic disk and brake pad. Brake pads always refer
to the friction materials. They can be classified into semi metallic, non asbestos and ceramic types
[1]. The development of innovative non asbestos friction materials for used in brake pads by
sustainable approaches, including the use of industrial waste by products such as fly ash, palm ash,
slag and others. The compositional design of friction materials is a well known problem of multi
criteria optimization that involves handling for prime classes of constituents, i.e.; 1) binder (e.g.
Phenolic) 2) fiber (e.g. Carbon, aramid, glass, rock wool, metal fiber and others) 3) fillers (e.g.
Barites, kaolin, wollastonite or others) and 4) functional modifier (e.g. Abrasive and lubricants) [2].
The compositional design of such materials is complicated further by the requirement that the
materials exhibit a suitable and desirable level of performance characteristic, such as low fade, low
rate, low frictional undulations and others [3,4].
Attractive factors associated with the utilization of waste materials such as fly ash, palm ash,
palm slag as a filler in friction composites are their abundance and the fact that they have very low,
or even zero filler material cost. In addition the successful utilization of waste material, also would
indirectly contribute to the reduction in the rate of depletion of valuable natural resources [5,6].
Naturally, the mechanical and wear properties of the phenolic resin based friction composites are
greatly dependent on the interaction and synergetic effects among the multiphase ingredients
including filler material involved. Loken (1980) found that crimped and chopped Kevlar fiber
together with wollastonite and dolomite was contributed to greatly increase the friction and wear
properties of the phenolic based friction materials [7]. In this sense, it is crucial to correctly and
properly select and combine the different component so as to satisfy a number of requirements for
the properties such as good wear resistance, small wear to the counterparts, stable coefficient of
friction and reliable strength at a wide range of stressing conditions of the friction materials [2,8].
This paper mainly deals with the selective different filler (palm slag, dolomite and calcium
carbonate) use in brake pad system. This study will give fundamental information on the
morphology which related to the performance of the different fillers in brake pads.

All rights reserved. No part of contents of this paper may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without the written permission of TTP, (ID:, Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP), Kangar, Malaysia-05/03/13,09:45:55)
Applied Mechanics and Materials Vols. 313-314 175

Materials and Experimental Setup

In Table 1 are listed composition of non asbestos friction material consist of 5 dry materials for
each recipe,i.e; phenolic resin, filler (palm slag, calcium carbonate, dolomite), graphite, steel fiber
and alumina. The three filler materials were obtained as follows: a local palm oil producer
(Seberang Perai) supplied the palm slag; calcium carbonate was obtained from a local supplier
(Ipoh); and dolomite was supplied from Rimba Mas quary (Perlis). Phenolic resin was selected as
the binder, steel fiber was used for reinforcement, graphite was used as a lubricant, and alumina was
used as an abrasive.
Table 1: Material content (wt%) in the composite brake pad material.

Materials Recipe 1 Recipe 2 Recipe 3

Phenolic Resin 20 20 20
Palm slag 40 - -
Calcium carbonate - 40 -
Dolomite - - 40
Graphite 10 10 10
Steel fiber 20 20 20
Alumina 10 10 10

Each recipe was mixed to obtain a homogeneous mixture of ingredients. Then, the mixtures were
compacted at a pressure of 15-17 MPa using a unaxial, hydraulic hand-press machine for the green
body of the brake pad composite as shown in Fig. 1. Then, the green body was compacted further
and cured using a hot press at 150 C with 60 tons of compressive molding pressure for five
minutes. At the end of the hot-pressing process, samples were taken out of the molds, allowed to
cool to room temperature, and cured further at a constant temperature of 150 C in air oven for four

Fig. 1: A schematic drawing of cold press technique for the green body preparation.

Measurement and analyses

The mechanical properties of the above mentioned phenolic resin based brake pad composites were
determined by a universal testing machine (UTM) at room temperature. Each sample, consisting of
an initial cross-sectional area of 86.6 mm, was placed between the lower cross member and lower
cross head of the UTM, and the load was applied at a cross-head speed of 5 mm/min. The load at
which failure occurred was used to calculate the compressive strength of the sample. Five
replications of the compressive tests were conducted on the samples that had different types of
The Rockwell type E hardness values of the friction composite samples were obtained using a
digital Rockwell hardness tester. A sample with a diameter of 10 mm was used to carry out the test
at different filler. The test was conducted using a 1/8-inch-diameter steel ball indenter with a load of
100 kgf.
176 Machinery Electronics and Control Engineering II

The ware of the brake pad composites was calculated from the data determined using a polisher
grinding machine with load which similar concept of the pin on disc tester. The tested samples were
in the form of cylindrical pins that were 10 mm in diameter and 15 mm in height. The pins were
placed on a stainless steel wheel with a load of 10 N and a wheel speed of 100 rpm. The test was
run for a constant distance of 1 km. The samples were weighed before and after testing to determine
weight loss within an accuracy of 0.0001 mg. Wear volume and wear rate for the brake pad
composites were calculated by the following Eq.1 and Eq. 2:
Wg before Wgafter
Wear volume = (1)

Wear volume (m3)

Wear rate =
Sliding distance (m) (2)

Before and after the wear test, the sample were air flush clean for 1 minute with compress air and
then used for the surface observation by mean of scanning electron microscope (SEM). The images
were then compared.

Results and Discussion

Fig. 2 shows the compressive strength of the different filler brake pad composites at 60 tons of
processing pressure. It can be seen that the compressive strength of the brake pad composite with
dolomite filler is the highest compared to the compressive strength of composites made with either
calcium carbonate or palm slag as the filler. This result was observed due to the compactness of the
composite. From Table 2, it is apparent that the dolomite brake pad composite is the densest
compared to the others.

Fig. 2. Compressive strength of brake pad composites with different fillers

Fig. 3 show the hardness of the different brake pads. It shows that the hardness of the palm slag
brake pad composite is the highest value. This might be due to the low hardness of the CaCO3 and
dolomite mineral compared to the palm slag.
Applied Mechanics and Materials Vols. 313-314 177

Fig. 3: Hardness of brake pad composites with different fillers.

From the data shown in Table 2, one can see that the calcium carbonate and palm slag brake pad
composites possess mechanical and wear properties that are similar to those of a conventional,
asbestos-based brake pad. Even though the dolomite brake pad composite had the highest strength,
it showed poor wear behavior compared to calcium carbonate and palm slag. Even though the
density indicated by palm slag composite was the lowest, but the wear properties is greatly
influenced by high hardness value of palm slag brake pad composite. This is supported by the
finding of the present studies which show the direct inverse linear correlation between surface
hardness and wear properties. According to Mandiskos (2001) the material wear decrease as its
surface hardness increases [9].

Table 2: Wear behavior of brake pad composites using different fillers under sliding wear

Sample Density Wear volume, Wear rate,

g/cm3 cm3 x 10 -3 m3/m x 10-13
Palm slag 2.02 0.89 8.9
Calcium carbonate (CaCO3) 2.17 0.60 6.0
Dolomite 2.21 1.22 12.2
Asbestos (Chand et al., 2004) 2.22 0.72 7.2

The SEM micrographs as shown in Figure 4 are the microstructure before and after wear test of
the composites with different filler materials. The surface of the brake pad composite shows a
typical abrasive wear mode in which debris, deep grooves and wide scratches are formed along the
wear direction. It was clearly observed that the won surface of the dolomite having more groves
defect compared to the palm slag and calcium carbonate brake pad composite. Debris was observed
in palm slag and calcium carbonate which to be one of the main factor that improve the severity of
178 Machinery Electronics and Control Engineering II

Fig. 4: Microstructure of different filler brake pad composites before and after 1 km distance of
wear: a) and d) palm slag, b) and e) CaCO3, c) and f) dolomite.

Based on mechanical properties and support by morphology, palm slag is considered can be used
effectively as alternative filler for the brake pad composite. Palm slag and calcium carbonate
(CaCO3) brake pad composite show having better wear properties than dolomite and comparable
with the conventional asbestos based brake pads.

[1] Y. Ma, G. S. Martyhkova, M. Valaskova, V. Matjka, Y. Lu, Effect of ZrSiO4 in non metallic
brake friction materials on friction performances. Tribol Int. 2007; 1-9.
[2] P. J. Blau, Composition, functions and testing of friction brake materials and their additives,
Oak Ridge National Laboratory Report, ORNL/TM 2001/64. Oak Ridge, TN, 2001; 2-7.
[3] M. Elzey, R. Vancheeswaran, S. Myers, R. Mc Lellan, Multi criteria optimization in the design
of composites for friction applications. Int. Conf. on brake 2000; automotive braking
technologies for the 21st century, Leeds, UK, 2001; 197- 205.
[4] B. K. Satapathy, Performance analysis of non asbestos fiber reinforced organic friction
materials, PhD Thesis, IIT Delhi, 2002.
[5] S. Kumar, C. B. Patil, Estimation of resources saving due to fly ash utilization in road
construction. Resource Conserv. Recycl. 48, 2006; 125-140.
[6] C. M. Ruzaidi, H. Kamarudin, J. B. Shamsul, A. M. Mustafa Al Bakri, A.R. Rafiza,
Comparative study on thermal, compressive and wear properties of palm slag brake pad
composite with other fillers, Australian J. of basic and appl. Sci. 5(10), 2011; 790-796.
[7] H. Y. Loken, Asbestos free brake and dry clutches reinforced with Kevlar aramid fiber. SAE
Transaction, paper no. 800667, 1980.
[8] W. Osterle, M. Griepentrog, Chemical and micro structural changes induced by friction and
wear of brake, Wear, 251, 2001; 1469-1476.
[9] M. N. Mandikos, G. P. McGivney, E. Davis, P. J. Bush, J. M. Carter, A comparison of the wear
resistance and hardness of indirect composite resins. J Prosthet Dent 2001;85:386-395.

All in-text references underlined in blue are linked to publications on ResearchGate, letting you access and read them immediately.