MEAM 537 Nanomechanics and Nanotribology

Engineering is progressing to ever-smaller scales, enabling new technologies, materials, devices, and applications. This course will provide an introduction to nano-scale tribology and the critical role it plays in the developing areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology. We will discuss how contact, adhesion, friction, lubrication, and wear at interfaces originate, using an integrated approach that combines concepts of mechanics, materials science, chemistry, and physics. We will cover a range of concepts and applications, drawing connections to both established and new approaches. We will discuss the limits of continuum mechanics and present newly developed theories and experiments tailored to describe micro- and nano-scale phenomena. We will emphasize specific applications throughout the course. Reading of scientific literature, critical peer discussion, individual and team problem assignments, and a peer-reviewed literature research project will be assigned as part of the course.