Nano-scale friction: A review

Hyun Joon Kim, Dae Eun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Citations (Scopus)


Frictional force is a resistant force that must be overcome to achieve relative motion between two components in contact. The economical and technological benefits of controlling friction and wear are tremendous. However, due to the complex nature of the phenomena, clear understanding of the mechanisms are yet to be achieved, particularly at the nano-scale where surface forces tend to dominate the tribological behavior of the system. In this paper the results of numerous theoretical, experimental, and numerical works on the fundamental mechanisms of friction at the nano-scale are reviewed. It is shown that friction coefficient values for nano-scale systems are quite varied depending on the conditions under which the system is investigated. As for the mechanism that causes friction at the nano-scale, interaction of the atoms plays a vital role. Furthermore, factors such as atomic radius, interatomic potential energy, and lattice parameters contribute to the degree of atomic interaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-151
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Precision Engineering and Manufacturing
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Apr

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research has been supported by the Intelligent Microsystem Center(IMC;, which carries out one of the 21st century's Frontier R&D Projects sponsored by Ministry of Knowledge Economy.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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