Al-Si alloys that are intended for extended durability applications during sliding contact -like the piston-cylinder block assembly in automotive engines- must operate under ultra-mild wear (UMW) conditions. A near-eutectic Al-11 wt% Si and a hypereutectic Al-19 wt% Si of different particle sizes but with a similar Si particle morphology were chemically etched, then, subjected to lubricated sliding tests under light loading (0.5N) conditions that correspond to the UMW regime. The wear processes included pressing the hard particles against the contact surface and embedding them into the Al matrix causing plastic flow and formation of pile-ups near the particles. The elevated portions of the matrix were then worn by the counterface.

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