An analytical and experimental investigation has been made of the wear of a heat exchanger tube vibrating against a tube support. The purpose of this investigation is to develop a predictive model for onset of tube wear and experimentally investigate the tube dynamics and the wear mechanism. The analytical model is based on impact wear theory. The rate of wear of a tube in forced vibration was measured as a function of temperature, amplitude of vibration, frequency of vibration, material, and environment. Tube-support impact velocity was measured using high-speed cinematography, and metallographic examination of the wear specimens was performed using a scanning electron microscope. The result is an experimentally validated model for onset of wear and experimental data for wear rates.

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