On a new method to determine the yield stress in lubricating grease

F. Cyriac, Pieter Martin Lugt, Rob Bosman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


An experimental study using both a controlled stress and a controlled strain rheometer has been undertaken to characterize lubricating grease in shear, creep, stress relaxation, and oscillatory flow, with a main focus on determining the yield stress. The yield stress was examined using a cone–plate and parallel-plate system with smooth and rough surfaces. Clear discrepancies were observed in the yield stress values obtained using different techniques where oscillatory strain sweep measurements seem to be the best choice. This technique is less sensitive to wall slip, shows good reproducibility, and is relatively easy to perform. The method also shows that the yield stress is a function of the imposed frequency and therefore of the time domain. At lower values of shear—that is, in the linear viscoelastic regime—there is no structural breakdown and the rheology of the grease can be described by the Maxwell model where the stress and the strain are almost proportional to each other. Based on this observation, a novel method to determine the yield stress is proposed: “The yield stress can be determined from the point where this linearity no longer applies.” This method is compared to those that are commonly used. The yield stress was found to depend exponentially on temperature and linearly on frequency.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1021-1030
JournalTribology transactions
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2015


  • IR-100842
  • METIS-316147

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