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Tribology and Lubrication Technology April 2017 : Page 4

PRESIDENT’S REPORT Dr. Ali Erdemir Materials in motion Tribologists will be among the scientists and researchers creating a sustainable future. hardness and self-lubricating FROM STONE AGE TO SPACE properties most needed for AGE , materials have served as harsh operating conditions or the backbone of mobility, in-environments. Prime examples dustrialization and economic include a range of novel car-growth. Today we still heavily bon-based nanomaterials, rely on materials for smooth, which have made a huge sci-safe and long-lasting opera-entific and technological im-tions of many mechanical sys-pact in many tribological ap-tems, including the cars we plications. In particular, drive every day. Materials also exploratory research has have been the driving force shown that coatings of gra-behind the present day infor-phene, nanodiamonds and dia-mation society and highly me-mondlike carbons hold great chanical world. In the field of promise for meeting the per-tribology, advanced materials formance, durability and effi-are much needed to endure Throughout history, materials have been the backbone of techni-ciency requirements of future increasingly higher thermal cal innovation. mechanical systems. and mechanical loadings and The greatest challenge for harsh environmental con-the future seems to be the straints. Thanks to many ma-integration of the vast tribomaterial data-Genome are phasing in to extract the very terials innovations in tribology, performance bases acquired over the years into the realiza-best that materials may bring to our lives in and durability of moving parts have improved tion of much smarter tribosystems that gen-the near future. Overall, the more demanding immensely over the years. erate little or no friction and last very long. and very stringent operating conditions envi-During the past few decades, much atten-As energy and environmental sustainability sioned for next-generation mechanical sys-tion has focused on nanomaterials and nano-becomes the new norm of our generation, we tems will be the driving force for the develop-technology. A very famous 1959 lecture by must make every conceivable effort to maxi-ment of new materials with unparalleled Caltech physicist and Nobel laureate Richard mize machine durability (which means high functionalities. Feynman titled There’s Plenty of Room at the wear resistance) and efficiency (which means Comprehensive friction and wear data-Bottom was rightfully credited for the concep-low friction) through the development of bases acquired on materials over the years tual foundations of these developments. Since more robust tribomaterials. have been vital in the design of more robust then great strides have been achieved in the Thanks to the pioneers of our tribology mechanical systems. In fact, the level of know-design and manufacture of many nanomateri-field and the many dedicated materials scien-how and expertise gained over the years have als that have led to the creation of new elec-tists, engineers and specialists of today, we reached a point where we can now design a tronics, photonics and photovoltaic devices. can proudly say that we are doing our part for suite of materials that can effectively meet Recent advances in supercomputers and ana-a sustainable future. the increasingly more stringent application lytical tools have further accelerated nanoscale needs of such systems. design and large-scale applications of nanoma-In particular, new materials synthesis terials providing unusual properties. methods based on advanced coating tech-Today it is difficult to foresee what tomor-Ali Erdemir is a Distinguished nologies are providing the kinds of flexibility row will bring and where things are heading. Fellow at Argonne National that a materials engineer needs to design a However, there is no doubt that research ef-Laboratory in Lemont, Ill. truly multifunctional and nanocomposite forts will continue at a highly accelerated You can reach him at coating architecture that offers the super pace as major global initiatives like Materials erdemir@anl.gov. 4 • APRIL 2 017 TRIBOL OG Y & L UBRIC A TION TE CHNOL OG Y © Can Stock Photo / njnightsky WWW .S TLE. OR G

President’s Report

Dr. Ali Erdemir

Materials in motion

Tribologists will be among the scientists and researchers creating a sustainable future.

FROM STONE AGE TO SPACE AGE, materials have served as the backbone of mobility, industrialization and economic growth. Today we still heavily rely on materials for smooth, safe and long-lasting operations of many mechanical systems, including the cars we drive every day. Materials also have been the driving force behind the present day information society and highly mechanical world. In the field of tribology, advanced materials are much needed to endure increasingly higher thermal and mechanical loadings and harsh environmental constraints. Thanks to many materials innovations in tribology, performance and durability of moving parts have improved immensely over the years.

During the past few decades, much attention has focused on nano-materials and nanotechnology. A very famous 1959 lecture by Caltech physicist and Nobel laureate Richard Feynman titled There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom was rightfully credited for the conceptual foundations of these developments. Since then great strides have been achieved in the design and manufacture of many nanomaterials that have led to the creation of new electronics, photonics and photovoltaic devices. Recent advances in supercomputers and analytical tools have further accelerated nanoscale design and large-scale applications of nanomaterials providing unusual properties.

Today it is difficult to foresee what tomorrow will bring and where things are heading. However, there is no doubt that research efforts will continue at a highly accelerated pace as major global initiatives like Materials Genome are phasing in to extract the very best that materials may bring to our lives in the near future. Overall, the more demanding and very stringent operating conditions envisioned for next-generation mechanical systems will be the driving force for the development of new materials with unparalleled functionalities.

Comprehensive friction and wear databases acquired on materials over the years have been vital in the design of more robust mechanical systems. In fact, the level of know-how and expertise gained over the years have reached a point where we can now design a suite of materials that can effectively meet the increasingly more stringent application needs of such systems.

In particular, new materials synthesis methods based on advanced coating technologies are providing the kinds of flexibility that a materials engineer needs to design a truly multifunctional and nanocomposite coating architecture that offers the super hardness and self-lubricating properties most needed for harsh operating conditions or environments. Prime examples include a range of novel carbon- based nanomaterials, which have made a huge scientific and technological impact in many tribological applications. In particular, exploratory research has shown that coatings of graphene, nanodiamonds and diamondlike carbons hold great promise for meeting the performance, durability and efficiency requirements of future mechanical systems.

The greatest challenge for the future seems to be the integration of the vast tribomaterial databases acquired over the years into the realization of much smarter tribosystems that generate little or no friction and last very long. As energy and environmental sustainability becomes the new norm of our generation, we must make every conceivable effort to maximize machine durability (which means high wear resistance) and efficiency (which means low friction) through the development of more robust tribomaterials.

Thanks to the pioneers of our tribology field and the many dedicated materials scientists, engineers and specialists of today, we can proudly say that we are doing our part for a sustainable future.

Ali Erdemir is a Distinguished Fellow at Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont, Ill. You can reach him at erdemir@anl.gov.

Read the full article at http://digitaleditions.walsworthprintgroup.com/article/President%E2%80%99s+Report/2734338/391476/article.html.

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