At low temperatures, most materials become stiff or brittle or both, including metals, rubber and other elastomers, and many plastics. This problem is exacerbated, especially in equipment with diesel engines, because the engines run rougher and the increased vibration is only slightly damped by shock absorbers and vibration mounts that become stiff and ineffective in the cold. The increased stiffness of the softer elastomers such as those used in seals, tires, and belts may cause leakage or other problems. In addition, volume changes with lowering temperatures may cause problems in assemblies with close tolerances, such as bearings. There are countless metal and nonmetal materials available, many of which are used in machinery manufacturing. Some are excellent low-temperature performers; some are extremely poor; many may be good or bad depending on the application, manufacturing technique, additive package, alloying material and so forth. The choice of which material to use for any application will depend on many more factors than can be considered here. The objective of this digest is to provide a discussion of the general types of problems that will be encountered in automotive and construction equipment when used in the extreme cold and to provide guidelines for overcoming them. The properties and problems of metals are discussed first, followed by a discussion of plastics and elastomers.

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 23 p.
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00619283
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: No. 91-5
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 29 1992 12:00AM