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 Tribology  posted by  member7_php   on 2/17/2009  Add Courseware to favorites Add To Favorites  
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Suh, Nam, and Nannaji Saka, 2.800 Tribology, Fall 2004. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare), (Accessed 07 Jul, 2010). License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA


Fall 2004

As electrical connectors become smaller and more dense, tribological design considerations of friction and wear are increasingly important. (Diagram by MIT OCW.)

Course Highlights

This course features lecture slides.

Course Description

This course addresses the design of tribological systems: the interfaces between two or more bodies in relative motion. Fundamental topics include: geometric, chemical, and physical characterization of surfaces; friction and wear mechanisms for metals, polymers, and ceramics, including abrasive wear, delamination theory, tool wear, erosive wear, wear of polymers and composites; and boundary lubrication and solid-film lubrication. The course also considers the relationship between nano-tribology and macro-tribology, rolling contacts, tribological problems in magnetic recording and electrical contacts, and monitoring and diagnosis of friction and wear. Case studies are used to illustrate key points.


Course Overview


Tribology deals with friction, wear, and lubrication. This course will approach tribology in terms of both the science of basic mechanisms, and the technologies of design, manufacture and maintenance.

Course Texts

Suh, N. P. Tribophysics. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1986. ISBN: 9780139309830.

———. Tribophysics and Design of Tribological Systems. (Manuscript)


There will be two 1 1/2 hour examinations.


A set of homework problems will be discussed in class approximately every two weeks.

Term Paper

Students are required to write a term paper on a subject of their choosing, once approved by the instructor.

Grading Policy

Term Paper 60%
Homework 20%
Readings Discussion and Presentation 20%


1 Introduction to Tribology Suh  
2 Introduction to Tribology (cont.) Suh  
3 Chemical and Physical State of the Solid Surface Suh  
4 Friction Suh  
5 Lab: Friction Measurement Saka  
6 Analysis of Large Plastic Deformation of Elasto-plastic Solids Suh Homework 1 due
7 Introduction to Wear Suh  
8 Response of Materials to Surface Traction Suh  
9 Wear Mechanisms Suh Homework 2 due
10 Exam 1    
11 Boundary Lubrication Saka  
12 Boundary Lubrication (cont.) Saka  
13 Hydrodynamic Lubrication Saka Homework 3 due
14 Design of Pin Joints and Electrical Connectors Saka  
15 Design of Cutting Tools Saka  
16 Introduction to Axiomatic Design Suh  
17 Design of Low Friction Surfaces Suh Homework 4 due
18 Design of Seals Suh  
19 Friction and Wear of Polymers and Composites Suh  
20 Solution Wear Suh  
21 Temperature Distribution Suh Homework 5 due

Homework 6 due
22 Erosive Wear Suh  
23 Exam 2   Homework 7 due
24 Nano and Micro-tribology Saka Term papers due
25 Term Paper Presentations   Tell A Friend