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The renaissance of friction

500 years after the first studies on friction, the concepts of superlubricity, wearless sliding and friction control are being realized in laboratories and have become predictable by adequate modelling. The challenge now is to bridge the gap between what is known about these processes on the microscopic and macroscopic scales.

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Figure 1: Scheme of a typical experiment to study friction at the nanoscale, in which an AFM tip is driven along a surface.


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Urbakh, M., Meyer, E. The renaissance of friction. Nature Mater 9, 8–10 (2010).

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