Nanoscale frictional characterisation of base and fully formulated lubricants based on activation energy components

Tribofilms are activated using precision sliding strip microscale tribometry with a base and a fully formulated lubricant with a ZDDP anti-wear additive. The employed tribometry uses combined pressure, shear and temperature activation. The chemical compositions of the formed tribofilms are ascertained through use of Photoelectron X–ray Spectroscopy (XPS). Nanoscale frictional measurements of the tribofilms are reported using fluid cell lateral force microscopy (LFM). The measured coefficient of interfacial boundary shear strength is used with analytical contact mechanics to relate the in-situ conditions to the activation energy components of the Eyring potential cage model. The paper shows that combined LFM and the Eyring model can explain the variations in the frictional characteristics of formed tribofilms.