Erva, T., Loukus, A., and Luskin, L., "Development of Aluminum Composite Automotive Brake Rotors," SAE Technical Paper 2016-01-1937, 2016, doi:10.4271/2016-01-1937.
Aluminum metal matrix composite brake rotors with a selective ceramic function reinforcement gradient (FRG) have been developed for automotive applications. This paper will highlight the design, manufacturing, and testing of the rotors. Weight saving of an aluminum composite rotor in comparison to an industry standard cast iron rotor is 50-60%. With this material change comes design considerations to manage rotor temperature, rotor surface integrity, and friction. Manufacturing methods to meet these design constraints were needed to develop a viable high performance aluminum composite rotor. High pressure squeeze casting with soluble coring techniques were developed to incorporate the selective FRG MMC rotors. Dynamometer testing was performed, concentrating on brake friction and temperature to evaluate the macro and micro interfaces in the rotors. The rotors’ testing results indicate that a functional reinforced aluminum metal matrix composite rotor is viable option for front and rear brake applications in the automotive and commercial trucking market.