Full Content is available to subscribers

Subscribe/Learn More  >

When Does Continuum Theory Describe Mechanical Contacts?

[+] Author Affiliations
Binquan Luan, Mark Robbins

Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD

Paper No. WTC2005-64095, pp. 407-408; 2 pages
  • World Tribology Congress III
  • World Tribology Congress III, Volume 1
  • Washington, D.C., USA, September 12–16, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Tribology Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4201-0 | eISBN: 0-7918-3767-X
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


The area of molecular contact between surfaces plays a central role in friction and adhesion. Traditionally it is calculated using continuum contact mechanics, which is known to break down as the contact width approaches atomic dimensions. Yet contact mechanics is being applied at ever smaller lengths, even to atomic force microscope (AFM) tips containing a few atoms. Molecular simulations are used to test the limits of contact mechanics under ideal non-adhesive and adhesive conditions. A simple geometry of sphere-on-flat is considered. One surface is an atomically flat crystal and is deformable. The approximately spherical curved surface is rigid and is produced by bending a crystal, or cutting a crystal or amorphous material. While these methods of producing the curved surface differ only in the amount of atomic-scale roughness, they produce very different behavior in some quantities. The normal stiffness is affected very little, the contact area can be modified by a factor of two, and the friction and lateral stiffness can be modified by an order of magnitude. The implications for AFM experiments are discussed.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



Interactive Graphics


Country-Specific Mortality and Growth Failure in Infancy and Yound Children and Association With Material Stature

Use interactive graphics and maps to view and sort country-specific infant and early dhildhood mortality and growth failure data and their association with maternal

Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In