Nanoscale frictional properties of ordered and disordered MoS2

E Serpini and A Rota and S Valeri and E Ukraintsev and B Rezek and T Polcar and P Nicolini, TRIBOLOGY INTERNATIONAL, 136, 67-74 (2019).

DOI: 10.1016/j.triboint.2019.03.004

The present work aims to understand the sliding of ordered/disordered molybdenum disulfide against itself by combination of nanoscale sliding experiments and atomistic simulations. Tribological experiments were performed using lateral force microscopy with tips covered by a thin sputtered MoS2 film. Nanoscale contact area between the MoS2-coated tips and MoS2 samples opened up the possibility for close comparison with classical molecular dynamics simulations. Our simulations replicated well the coefficient of friction obtained by experiments for various contact conditions and shed light on nanoscale sliding of both crystalline and amorphous MoS2. Experimental sliding at humid environment demonstrated detrimental effect of water molecules on friction. However, such effect was much less pronounced when compared to that observed in macroscopic sliding experiments.

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