Tribology Letters

, 66:74 | Cite as

Magnetic Levitation Tribometer: A Point-Contact Friction

  • A. A. VaskoEmail author
  • O. M. Braun
  • O. A. Marchenko
  • A. G. Naumovets
Original Paper


We developed a new magnetic levitation tribometer (MLT) to study point-contact friction via pendulum method. The device allows us to carry out fast and accurate point-contact measurement of friction between a pair of materials. The MTL parameters were found with the help of test experiments with the steel ball / glass plate pair. The friction coefficient values are coherent with the results known in the literature (Serway and Beichner in Physics for scientists and engineers, 5th edn, Saunders College Publishing, Orlando, 2000). The proposed MLT technique at loads lower than \(10^{-3}\) N is very promising for non-destructive investigation of frictional properties of organic monolayers.


Point-contact friction measurements Moment of inertia of pendulum Kinetic friction coefficient 

List of Symbols


Angle deflection of pendulum


Pendulum moment of inertia


Impact of the external magnetic eld without extra mass

\(\omega _0\)

Natural frequency without extra mass

\(\Delta m\)

Extra mass


Distance from the axis of pendulum to the center of extra mass


The total moment of inertia


Impact of the external magnetic field


Natural frequency


The damping coefficient


The total moment of force without friction


Applied normal load

\(\mu _{k}\)

Velocity-dependent kinetic friction coefficient

\(\mu _{k0}\)

Velocity-independent kinetic friction coefficient


Contact radius


Angular frequency


Dimensionless angle deflection of pendulum


Dimensionless damping coefficient

\(\tilde{\omega }\)

Dimensionless natural frequency

\(\tilde{\gamma }\)

Overall friction coefficient


The total moment of frictional force


Dimensionless time



The authors would like to thank A. Le Bot, J. Scheibert, and M. Sahli Riad for numerous helpful comments and discussions. This work was supported by CNRS-Ukraine PICS Grant No. 151539. O.B. was supported in part by COST Action MP1303.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of PhysicsNational Academy of Sciences of UkraineKievUkraine

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