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The effect of nanoparticles on thin film elasto-hydrodynamic lubrication

Journal Name: Applied Physics Letter
Volume: 103
Issue: 26
Page: 263111

List of Authors:
Hamed Ghaednia, Hasan Babaei, Robert L Jackson, Michael J Bozack, JM Khodadadi


Carefully conducted friction tests of a nano-lubricant in the thin film elasto-hydrodynamic lubrication regime showed that the presence of nanoparticles reduces friction. By using surface analyses techniques and molecular dynamics simulations, we explored the effectiveness of different interactions in the system, namely the interactions between nanoparticles with the lubricant or surfaces. Based on the results, the friction reduction mechanism was found to be that the nanoparticles induce an obstructed flow (plug flow) in the thin film between lubricated surfaces. This reduces friction by forcing only a few layers of lubricant molecules to slide on each other.