Atomistic Mechanism of Friction-Force Independence on the Normal Load and Other Friction Laws for Dynamic Structural Superlubricity

Nikolay V. Brilliantov, Alexey A. Tsukanov, Artem K. Grebenko, Albert G. Nasibulin, Igor A. Ostanin

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Abstract

We explore dynamic structural superlubricity for the case of a relatively large contact area, where the friction force is proportional to the area (exceeding

100


nm
2
) experimentally, numerically, and theoretically. We use a setup composed of two molecular smooth incommensurate surfaces: graphene-covered tip and substrate. The experiments and molecular dynamic simulations demonstrate independence of the friction force on the normal load for a wide range of normal loads and relative surface velocities. We propose an atomistic mechanism for this phenomenon, associated with synchronic out-of-plane surface fluctuations of thermal origin, and confirm it by numerical experiments. Based on this mechanism, we develop a theory for this type of superlubricity and show that friction force increases linearly with increasing temperature and relative velocity for velocities larger than a threshold velocity. The molecular dynamic results are in a fair agreement with predictions of the theory.
Original languageEnglish
Article number266201
JournalPhysical review letters
Volume131
Early online date26 Dec 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Dec 2023

Keywords

  • 2024 OA procedure

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