Skip to main content
Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Adjoint Error Estimation for Elastohydrodynamic Lubrication

By Daniel Edward Hart


In this thesis, adjoint error estimation techniques are applied to complex elastohydrodynamic lubrication (EHL) problems. A functional is introduced, namely the friction, and justification is provided as to why this quantity, and hence its accuracy, is important. An iterative approach has been taken to develop understanding of the mechanisms at work. A series of successively complex cases are proposed, each with adjoint error estimation techniques applied to them. The first step is built up from a model free boundary problem, where the cavitation condition is captured correctly using a sliding mesh. The next problem tackled is a hydrodynamic problem, where non-linear viscosity and density are introduced. Finally, a full EHL line contact problem is introduced, where the surface deforms elastically under pressure. For each case presented, an estimate of a finer mesh friction, calculated from solutions obtained only on a coarse mesh, is corrected according to the adjoint error estimation technique. At each stage, care is taken to ensure that the error estimate is computed accurately when compared against the measured error in the friction.\ud \ud Non-uniform meshes are introduced for the model free boundary problem. These nonuniform meshes are shown to give the same excellent predictions of the error as uniform meshes. Adaptive refinement is undertaken, with the mesh being refined using the adjoint error estimate. Results for this are presented for both the model free-boundary problem and the full EHL problem. This is shown to enable the accurate calculation of friction values using an order of magnitude fewer mesh points than with a uniform mesh.\ud \ud Throughout this thesis, standard numerical techniques for calculating EHL solutions have been used. That is, regular mesh finite difference approximations have been used to discretise the problem, with multigrid used to efficiently solve the equations, and spatial adaptivity added through multigrid patches. The adjoint problems have been solved using standard linear algebra packages

Publisher: School of Computing (Leeds)
Year: 2008
OAI identifier:

Suggested articles


  1. (1986). A forward iterative numerical method for steady-state elastohydrodynamically lubricated contacts at high loads.
  2. (1987). A note on applications of adaptive finite elements to elastohydrodynamic lubrication problems.
  3. (1987). A note on some mathematical studies on elastohydrodynamic lubrication.
  4. Effect of surface roughness on mixed EHD lubrication characteristics. Tribology Transactions, 46(1):44–48, 2003.Appendix In this appendix are copies of the previously published papers of the candidate.
  5. (1996). On the theory of time-dependant micro-TEHL for a nonNewtonian lubricant in line contacts.

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.