WIT Press


Friction In Nature

Price

Free (open access)

Paper DOI

10.2495/DN080271

Volume

114

Pages

10

Page Range

263 - 272

Published

2008

Size

518 kb

Author(s)

T. Liskiewicz, A. Morina & A. Neville

Abstract

Nature has found a number of ways to efficiently tackle friction problems. It has solutions to provide ultra low friction in the case of lubricated systems, ultra high friction in the case of adhesives or in some cases even controlled adaptable friction performance. Frictional surfaces can be found on different scales in nature from a nanometre scale to a macro scale. From a wide variety of natural systems synovial joints have probably attracted more research attention than other systems and this is fully justified, as they are examples of ideal synergy between lubrication process and materials technology. Other examples include shark skin riblets for drag reduction, hierarchical structures for maximum adhesion or mucus and slime for an improved slip. In this contribution a summary of natural frictional systems is presented. Several examples of the successful use of biomimicry for the manipulation of the interface to provide the desired functions are presented here. Finally directions of further exploitation of a biomimetic approach in tribology are discussed. Keywords: friction, biomimetics, surface engineering, hierarchical structures, drag reduction, adhesion, nano-technology, lubrication. 1 Introduction Natural systems attract a lot of attention from engineers, not only due to their sophisticated beauty but mainly because of their high efficiency and durability. Biomimetics is an emerging field of research and its benefits have been found in a number of areas from architecture, robotics to materials science and many more [1]. A biomimetic approach benefits from the fact that nature is regarded as

Keywords

friction, biomimetics, surface engineering, hierarchical structures, drag reduction, adhesion, nano-technology, lubrication.