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Research Article | Open Access

Towards understanding the surface rippling process by periodic reciprocal nanoscratching

Zihan LI1,2Yongda YAN1,2Jiqiang WANG1,2Chen LI1Yanquan GENG1,2( )
State Key Laboratory of Robotics and Systems, Robotics Institute, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150080, China
Center for Precision Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150001, China
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Graphical Abstract


The bundle structure formed perpendicular to the scratching direction is a type of wear-induced structure for thermoplastics. In this study, the formation mechanism of bundle structures on polycarbonate (PC) surfaces is investigated by reciprocal scratching experiments. Based on the analysis of the morphologies, friction forces, and height signals, the formation of the bundle structure is reproduced. The influence of scratching parameters, including the feed value and scratching direction, on the formation of the bundle structure is also studied. It is found that the bundle structure is accumulated by the continuous stacking of the sample materials plowed by the tip in stick–slip motion, and that the stick–slip behavior is enhanced with increased scratching times. This work reproduces the formation process of bundle structure in experiments for the first time and demonstrates that the stick–slip enhancement mechanism exists in the reciprocal scratching process, providing further insight into the friction behavior of polymers.


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Pages 1815-1828
Cite this article:
LI Z, YAN Y, WANG J, et al. Towards understanding the surface rippling process by periodic reciprocal nanoscratching. Friction, 2023, 11(10): 1815-1828.








Web of Science






Received: 27 April 2022
Revised: 27 June 2022
Accepted: 19 September 2022
Published: 03 February 2023
© The author(s) 2022.

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