The Development of the Lead Free Carbon Brush for Starters 2005-01-0599
Carbon brushes for automotive starters are used under severe conditions of high electric current density, high contact pressure and high sliding velocity. Therefore lead has traditionally been added to brushes to improve performance and durability. Lead is an environmental hazardous substance. In the EU, the law prohibits adding lead to brushes for electric motors which is installed on new automobiles in and after January 2005. In order to develop the lead free carbon brush for starters, we analyzed the effect and selected substitutive substance of lead. Adding lead to the brush reduces the electric resistance increase of the brush in high-temperature and high-humidity atmosphere and in high-temperature atmosphere. Furthermore lead reduces the wear amount of brush. We developed the lead free brush surpassing the lead addition brush in performance and durability by addition of lead alternatives silver and zinc.