Amonton’s laws of friction are categorized as the classical version of friction laws which have highly been accepted by the engineers dealing with friction. Guillaume Amontons has earned his name in the field of physics and chemistry as a physicist and inventor of instruments. He is also accredited as the pioneer theorist who studied the concept of friction in detail and presented laws of friction. In the field of tribology, Da Vinci, Amontons and Desanguliers along with Euler and Coulomb are recognized as researchers, who not only contributed to the theoretical dimension of the field but also provided the analytical and practical version of the concepts which form the foundation of the modern tribology (Gao, Luedtke, Gourdon, & Israelachvili, 2004).
Laws of friction were being rediscovered in the year 1699 which were first introduced by Leonardo Vinci. Despite facing a lot of skepticism, Coulomb analyzed and verified these laws in the year 1781. These laws cover three different aspects of dry friction (Archard, 1957):
- Friction force is proportional to the normal load (first Amonton’s law)
- Friction force is independent of the apparent contact area (second Amonton’s law)
- Kinetic friction is independent of sliding speed (Coulomb’s law)
Laws of friction have gained same importance in the modern world in order to solve many tribological and engineering problems. With development of nanotribology field, the validity of Amonton’s laws is questioned. Many researchers reported failure of the laws at nanoscale and new models are being develop to help engineers in solving various problems.
Archard, J. F. (1957). Elastic deformation and the laws of friction. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London; Series A: Mathematical and Physical Sciences, 243(1233), 190-205.
Gao, J., Luedtke, W. D., Gourdon, D. R., & Israelachvili, J. N. (2004). Frictional forces and Amontons’ law: from the molecular to the macroscopic scale.
Otsuki, M., & Matsukawa, H. (2013). Systematic breakdown of Amontons’ law of friction for an elastic object locally obeying Amontons’ law. Scientific reports, 3, 1586.