Roughness of the solid particles controls the viscosity of suspension

The internet is full of videos of people having fun running over white slime. It almost looks as if they were walking on water. But when they stand still, they slowly begin to sink. The slime in question is usually a concentrated suspension comprising cornstarch and water. Although...Read More »


Bio-based material stronger than steel and spider silk altogether

Researchers at KTH have produced a bio-based material that is reported to surpass the strength of all known bio-based materials whether fabricated or natural, including wood and spider silk.

Working with cellulose nanofibre (CNF), the essential building block of wood and other plant...Read More »


Levitated nanoparticles reveal the crucial role of friction in state transitions at nanoscale

Experiments with levitated nanoparticles reveal role of friction at the nanoscale

Transitions occurring in nanoscale systems, such as a chemical reaction or the folding of a protein, are strongly affected by friction and thermal noise. Almost 80 years ago, the Dutch physicist Hendrik Kramers predicted that such transitions...Read More »


Researchers simulate wear of materials as they rub together

Forty years ago, MIT emeritus professor of mechanical engineering Ernest Rabinowicz calculated that 6 percent of the annual U.S. gross domestic product was lost through mechanical wear. His assertion gained enough traction that it became known as the “Rabinowicz Law.”

“Even so, the mechanism by which mechanical...Read More »


Bi-layered materials: graphene - no heat, no friction; h-BN - as strong as diamond.

A group of researchers from Queen’s University Belfast have discovered a stretchy miracle material that could be used to create highly resistant smart devices and scratch-proof paint for cars.

Led by Dr Elton Santos from the University’s School of Mathematics and Physics, an international team of researchers...Read More »


Triboelectric charges on HDPE are strain induced

New research indicates how static electricity puts the charge in material, offering answer to centuries-old question

For centuries, scientists have tried to understand triboelectric charging, commonly known as static electricity.

Triboelectric charging causes toner from a photocopier or laser printer to stick to paper,...Read More »


Nanotechnology Flight Test

Mastering the intricacies of controlling matter at the nanoscale level is part of a revolutionary quest to apply nanotechnology to benefit industrial processes. A key element of that technology is the use of carbon nanotubes.

Carbon nanotubes are small hollow tubes with diameters of 0.7 to 50...Read More »


Triboelectricity to collect wave power

Nature provides three sources of energy for free: sunlight, air and gravity. Solar and wind power are increasingly exploited, gravity less so. Hydraulic power plants harvest energy from flowing rivers. Tidal energy can be gathered along some inlets and coasts. But few places are suitable for dams or...Read More »


Ice crystals formation is controlled by the surface texture - new study shows

WASHINGTON (May 17, 2017)—A new study examining how ice forms from pure water found that the geometry of the surface that water is on can have an effect on whether or not it freezes, suggesting that surface geometry plays an important role in ice formation. Greater understanding of...Read More »


Three-dimensional subatomic scale AFM can measure friction

Atomic force microscopy (AFM) is an extremely sensitive technique that allows us to image materials and/or characterize their physical properties on the atomic scale by sensing the force above material surfaces using a precisely controlled tip. However, conventional AFM only provides the surface normal component of the force...Read More »


Triboelectric generators can be used to improve mass spectroscopy sensors

Triboelectric nanogenerators convert mechanical energy harvested from the environment to electricity for powering small devices such as sensors or for recharging consumer electronics. Now, researchers have harnessed these devices to improve the charging of molecules in a...Read More »


Friction Velocity Dependence - Breaking Friction Laws

Controlling friction is one of the main goals in modern tribology. Due to complexity of the tribological processes, up to date the problem remains mainly unsolved. While classical tribology relies on the famous friction laws, developments in nanotribology made it evident that these laws...Read More »


Controlling friction of graphene

Graphene, a wonder just one atom thick material, shows incredible wear-resistance and super low friction levels. This behavior is ascribed to its low inter-layer shear properties and high normal load carrying capabilities. However, in many cases controlling friction is preferable. Apparently, this is possible with graphene, which makes it...Read More »


Switchable Friction on Graphene

Graphene is a unique material in many aspects and has recently been applied in various ways. In tribology, it has been shown to lead to a superlubricity – an ultra low friction state. In laboratory air, graphene was reported to show twofold symmetry in friction and anisotropy...Read More »


2D Materials Elastic Properties - AFM-Hertz Methodology

 

2D materials are single or only few atomic layer thick and posses unique properties with potential in many technological fields. They are highly anisotropic, having significantly different properties in-plane and perpendicular-to-the-plane. For example, graphene, one of the most explored 2D materials, has the in-plane Young’s modulus , whereas the perpendicular-to-the-plane...Read More »


Superlubricity by means of repulsive van der Waals forces

Superlubricity, a state of low friction (<0.001), can be achieved by different mechanisms. The structural superlubricity occurs, if the crystal lattices of the contacting bodies are incommensurate. Nano-scrolls may act as a bearing and may also lead to the superlubricity state by...Read More »


Relativistic Tribology, Tribo Plasma

Gravitational waves were proved to exist, thus validating one more prediction by Albert Einstein and his general theory of relativity! Is there any relation between the relativity and Tribology? It looks like there is! “Micromechanisms of Friction and Wear: Introduction to Relativistic Tribology” is a fascinating book, where...Read More »


Superlubricity state through atom-by-atom surface tuning

Friction is everywhere around us, working against motion of cars, airplanes, their engines, wind mills and other devices causing wear and decreasing their energy and overall performance efficiency. However, there exists a certain state, called superlubricity, at which the friction vanishes. This effect can potentially lead to significant improvements in...Read More »


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