Imperial College London

Dr James P. Ewen

Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Mechanical Engineering

Research Associate (EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellowship)
 
 
 
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Contact

 

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Location

 

462City and Guilds BuildingSouth Kensington Campus

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Summary

 

Publications

Publication Type
Year
to

18 results found

Ewen J, Ramos Fernandez E, Smith E, Dini Det al., 2020, Nonequilibrium Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Tribological Systems, Modeling and Simulation of Tribological Problems in Technology, Editors: Paggi, Hills, Publisher: Springer Nature, Pages: 95-130, ISBN: 978-3-030-20376-4

Book chapter

Ayestarán Latorre C, Ewen JP, Gattinoni C, Dini Det al., 2019, Simulating surfactant-iron oxide interfaces: from density functional theory to molecular dynamics, The Journal of Physical Chemistry B, Vol: 123, Pages: 6870-6881, ISSN: 1520-6106

Understanding the behaviour of surfactant molecules on iron oxide surfaces is important for many industrial applications. Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of such systems have been limited by the absence of a force-field (FF) which accurately describes the molecule-surface interactions. In this study, interaction energies from density functional theory (DFT) + U calculations with a van der Waals functional are used to parameterize a classical FF for MD simulations of amide surfactants on iron oxide surfaces. The Original FF, which was derived using mixing rules and surface Lennard-Jones (LJ) parameters developed for nonpolar molecules, were shown to significantly underestimate the adsorption energy and overestimate the equilibrium adsorption distance compared to DFT. Conversely, the Optimized FF showed excellent agreement with the interaction energies obtained from DFT calculations for a wide range of surface coverages and molecular conformations near to and adsorbed on α-Fe2O3(0001). This was facilitated through the use of a Morse potential for strong chemisorption interactions, modified LJ parameters for weaker physisorption interactions, and adjusted partial charges for the electrostatic interactions. The Original FF and Optimized FF were compared in classical nonequilibrium molecular dynamics (NEMD) simulations of amide molecules confined between iron oxide surfaces. When the Optimized FF was employed, the amide molecules were pulled closer to the surface and the orientation of the headgroups was more similar to that observed in the DFT calculations compared to the Original FF. The Optimized FF proposed here facilitates classical MD simulations of anhydrous amide-iron oxide interfaces in which the interactions are representative of accurate DFT calculations.

Journal article

Restrepo SE, van Eijk MCP, Ewen JP, 2019, Behaviour of n-alkanes confined between iron oxide surfaces at high pressure and shear rate: A nonequilibrium molecular dynamics study, Tribology International, Vol: 137, Pages: 420-432, ISSN: 0301-679X

The behaviour of n-alkanes confined and sheared between iron oxide surfaces has been studied using nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations. The molecular extension, orientation, film structure, flow, and friction have been investigated for a range of n-alkane chain lengths under conditions representative of the elastohydrodynamic lubrication regime. At high pressure, the molecules show strong layering and long-range order, suggesting solid-like films. Conversely, high shear rates result in less elongated, layered, and ordered molecules; indicating more liquid-like films. Although Couette flow is usually observed for short n-alkanes, the flow is often non-linear for long n-alkanes. The friction coefficient increases logarithmically with shear rate, but the slope decreases with increasing pressure such that it becomes insensitive to shear rate for long n-alkanes.

Journal article

Ewen J, Gao H, Mueser M, Dini Det al., 2019, Shear heating, flow, and friction of confined molecular fluids at high pressure, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, Vol: 21, Pages: 5813-5823, ISSN: 1463-9076

Understanding the molecular-scale behavior of fluids confined and sheared between solid surfaces is important for many applications, particularly tribology where this often governs the macroscopic frictional response. In this study, nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations are performed to investigate the effects of fluid and surface properties on the spatially resolved temperature and flow profiles, as well as friction. The severe pressure and shear rate conditions studied are representative of the elastohydrodynamic lubrication regime. In agreement with tribology experiments, flexible lubricant molecules give low friction, which increases linearly with logarithmic shear rate, while bulky traction fluids show higher friction, but a weaker shear rate dependence. Compared to lubricants, traction fluids show more significant shear heating and stronger shear localization. Models developed for macroscopic systems can be used to describe both the spatially resolved temperature profile shape and the mean film temperature rise. The thermal conductivity of the fluids increases with pressure and is significantly higher for lubricants compared to traction fluids, in agreement with experimental results. In a subset of simulations, the efficiency of the thermostat in one of the surfaces is reduced to represent surfaces with lower thermal conductivity. For these unsymmetrical systems, the flow and the temperature profiles become strongly asymmetric and some thermal slip can occur at the solid-fluid interface, despite the absence of velocity slip. The larger temperature rises and steeper velocity gradients in these cases lead to large reductions in friction, particularly at high pressure and shear rate.

Journal article

Ewen J, Heyes D, Dini D, 2018, Advances in nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations of lubricants and additives, Friction, Vol: 6, Pages: 349-386, ISSN: 2223-7704

Nonequilibrium molecular dynamics (NEMD) simulations have provided unique insights into the nanoscale behaviour of lubricants under shear. This review discusses the early history of NEMD and its progression from a tool to corroborate theories of the liquid state, to an instrument that can directly evaluate important fluid properties, towards a potential design tool in tribology. The key methodological advances which have allowed this evolution are also highlighted. This is followed by a summary of bulk and confined NEMD simulations of liquid lubricants and lubricant additives, as they have progressed from simple atomic fluids to ever more complex, realistic molecules. The future outlook of NEMD in tribology, including the inclusion of chemical reactivity for additives, and coupling to continuum methods for large systems, is also briefly discussed.

Journal article

Gattinoni C, Ewen JP, Dini D, 2018, Adsorption of Surfactants on alpha-Fe2O3(0001): A Density Functional Theory Study, JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY C, Vol: 122, Pages: 20817-20826, ISSN: 1932-7447

Journal article

Clark RH, Ewen JP, Heins RJ, Stevenson PAet al., 2018, Fuel composition, EP3337877A1

Patent

Clark RH, Ewen JP, Wardle RWM, Chinnusamy B, Stevenson PAet al., 2018, High power fuel compositions, EP3022278B1

Patent

Ewen JP, Kannam SK, Todd BD, Dini Det al., 2018, Slip of Alkanes Confined between Surfactant Monolayers Adsorbed on Solid Surfaces, Langmuir, Vol: 34, Pages: 3864-3873, ISSN: 0743-7463

© 2018 American Chemical Society. The slip and friction behavior of n-hexadecane, confined between organic friction modifier surfactant films adsorbed on hematite surfaces, has been studied using nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations. The influence of the surfactant type and coverage, as well as the applied shear rate and pressure, has been investigated. A measurable slip length is only observed for surfactant films with a high surface coverage, which provide smooth interfaces between well-defined surfactant and hexadecane layers. Slip commences above a critical shear rate, beyond which the slip length first increases with increasing shear rate and then asymptotes toward a constant value. The maximum slip length increases significantly with increasing pressure. Systems and conditions which show a larger slip length typically give a lower friction coefficient. Generally, the friction coefficient increases linearly with logarithmic shear rate; however, it shows a much stronger shear rate dependency at low pressure than at high pressure. Relating slip and friction, slip only occurs above a critical shear stress, after which the slip length first increases linearly with increasing shear stress and then asymptotes. This behavior is well-described using previously proposed slip models. This study provides a more detailed understanding of the slip of alkanes on surfactant monolayers. It also suggests that high coverage surfactant films can significantly reduce friction by promoting slip, even when the surfaces are well-separated by a lubricant.

Journal article

Ewen JP, Kannam S, Todd B, Dini Det al., 2018, Slip of hexadecane on organic friction modifier monolayers, APS March Meeting 2018, Publisher: American Physical Society, ISSN: 0003-0503

Conference paper

Ewen J, Echeverri Restrepo S, 2017, LAMMPS_Builder

This software is suitable as a starting point for performing confined nonequilibrium molecular dynamics (NEMD) simulations of organic friction modifier (OFM) films adsorbed to iron surfaces, separated by a layer of n-alkane molecules:This software generates a LAMMPS datafile and basic input file containing:* Two a-Fe or a-Fe2O3 slabs with/without random nanoscale roughness* Two OFM monolayers above/below bottom/top slabs* A central region of n-alkaneshttps://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1043868

Software

Ewen J, 2017, Molecular dynamics simulations of lubricants and additives

Thesis dissertation

Ewen JP, Gattinoni C, Zhang J, Heyes DM, Spikes HA, Dini Det al., 2017, On the effect of confined fluid molecular structure on nonequilibrium phase behaviour and friction, PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY CHEMICAL PHYSICS, Vol: 19, Pages: 17883-17894, ISSN: 1463-9076

Journal article

Ewen J, Gattinoni C, Spikes H, Morgan N, Dini Det al., 2017, Nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations of organic friction modifiers, 253rd National Meeting of the American-Chemical-Society (ACS) on Advanced Materials, Technologies, Systems, and Processes, Publisher: AMER CHEMICAL SOC, ISSN: 0065-7727

Conference paper

Ewen JP, Echeverri Restrepo S, Morgan N, Dini Det al., 2017, Nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations of stearic acid adsorbed on iron surfaces with nanoscale roughness, Tribology International, Vol: 107, Pages: 264-273, ISSN: 0301-679X

© 2016 The Authors Nonequilibrium molecular dynamics (NEMD) simulations have been used to examine the structure and friction of stearic acid films adsorbed on iron surfaces with nanoscale roughness. The effect of pressure, stearic acid coverage, and level of surface roughness were investigated. The direct contact of asperities was prevented under all of the conditions simulated due to strong adsorption, which prevented squeeze-out. An increased coverage generally resulted in lower lateral (friction) forces due to reductions in both the friction coefficient and Derjaguin offset. Rougher surfaces led to more liquidlike, disordered films; however, the friction coefficient and Derjaguin offset were only slightly increased. This suggests that stearic acid films are almost as effective on contact surfaces with nanoscale roughness as those which are atomically-smooth.

Journal article

Ewen JP, Gattinoni C, Thakkar FM, Morgan N, Spikes HA, Dini Det al., 2016, Nonequilibrium Molecular Dynamics Investigation of the Reduction in Friction and Wear by Carbon Nanoparticles Between Iron Surfaces, Tribology Letters, Vol: 63, ISSN: 1023-8883

Journal article

Ewen JP, Gattinoni C, Thakkar FM, Morgan N, Spikes HA, Dini Det al., 2016, A Comparison of Classical Force-Fields for Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Lubricants, MATERIALS, Vol: 9, ISSN: 1996-1944

Journal article

Ewen JP, Gattinoni C, Morgan N, Spikes HA, Dini Det al., 2016, Nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations of organic friction modifiers adsorbed on iron oxide surfaces, Langmuir, Vol: 32, Pages: 4450-4463, ISSN: 0743-7463

© 2016 American Chemical Society. For the successful development and application of lubricants, a full understanding of the nanoscale behavior of complex tribological systems is required, but this is difficult to obtain experimentally. In this study, we use nonequilibrium molecular dynamics (NEMD) simulations to examine the atomistic structure and friction properties of commercially relevant organic friction modifier (OFM) monolayers adsorbed on iron oxide surfaces and lubricated by a thin, separating layer of hexadecane. Specifically, acid, amide, and glyceride OFMs, with saturated and Z-unsaturated hydrocarbon tail groups, are simulated at various surface coverages and sliding velocities. At low and medium coverage, the OFMs form liquidlike and amorphous monolayers, respectively, which are significantly interdigitated with the hexadecane lubricant, resulting in relatively high friction coefficients. At high coverage, solidlike monolayers are formed for all of the OFMs, which, during sliding, results in slip planes between well-defined OFM and hexadecane layers, yielding a marked reduction in the friction coefficient. When present at equal surface coverage, OFMs with saturated and Z-unsaturated tail groups are found to yield similar structure and friction behavior. OFMs with glyceride head groups yield significantly lower friction coefficients than amide and particularly carboxylic acid head groups. For all of the OFMs and coverages simulated, the friction coefficient is found to increase linearly with the logarithm of sliding velocity; however, the gradient of this increase depends on the coverage. The structure and friction details obtained from these simulations agree well with experimental results and also shed light on the relative tribological performance of these OFMs through nanoscale structural variations. This has important implications in terms of the applicability of NEMD to aid the development of new formulations to control friction.

Journal article

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