News International Sugar Journal

Controlling friction by adjusting van der Waals forces [Registered]

Friction is an everyday phenomenon that is sometimes desirable (enabling cars to accelerate) and sometimes not (friction in the form of vehicle drag and friction in the engine and transmission system increase the car’s energy consumption). For many scientists and engineers, the ability to control friction is therefore right at the top of their wish list. The amount of friction generated depends on numerous factors, including the minute intermolecular forces acting between the two surfaces in contact – so-called van der Waals forces. The importance of these intermolecular interactions in generating friction has long been known, but has now been…

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