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Institute of Functional Surfaces

Tribology and surface engineering

Tribology and Surface Engineering

The study of friction, lubrication and wear under the collective name “Tribology” has been an area of research in the School of Mechanical Engineering for over a century.

As such, tribological research is extremely broad, covering basic, strategic and applied threads with both analytical and experimental contributions.

The laboratory facilities are extensive, with many basic tribometers, bespoke simulation rigs and devices to test real applications supported by analytical instruments to characterise materials, surfaces and lubricants at the minute scales required for this discipline. Alongside this sit theoretical studies of the tribology of a wide range of engineering component systems to predict lubrication, friction and wear and simulate the complex interactions between lubrication, friction and wear during their lifetime.

We also lead and host the highly regarded research conference “The Leeds-Lyon Symposium on Tribology” with colleagues at INSA de Lyon in France.

This event has become an annual feature in the international research calendar since its inception in 1974 and attracts researchers and practitioners in tribology from all around the world.

We have recently installed a state-of-the-art PVD system (Hauzer) and now have a multi-capability thin film coating partnership with Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam Universities.