The paper deals in some detail with the fretting wear behaviour of mild steel from room temperature to 600°C in an air atmosphere. The general mechanism of fretting for mild steel is discussed both at the lower temperatures and also at higher temperatures where normal oxidative processes become involved in the fretting mechanism. Both surface metallographic observations and surface SEM observations are presented in support of the wear processes involved. It is shown that there is a well defined wear transition temperature occurring in the region of 200°C together with the possibility of a second transition temperature occurring between 500 and 600°C. Finally, some consideration is given to the activation energy for tribo‐oxidation under fretting conditions and the manner in which the rate controlling factor changes from adhesion to oxidation as the temperature of wear increases.
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