Solid lubrication by multiwalled carbon nanotubes in air and in vacuum

Kazuhisa Miyoshi, K. W. Street, R. L. Vander Wal, Rodney Andrews, Ali Sayir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


Aligned and dispersed multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) were evaluated for solid lubrication applications. Results obtained from unidirectional sliding friction experiments indicate that MWNTs have superior friction properties and sustainability in air and vacuum. Based on analyses of wear surfaces, transfer films, wear debris, and microstructures, the lubrication mechanism of the MWNTs is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-201
Number of pages11
JournalTribology Letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2005

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the NASA Vehicle Systems program’s Low Emissions Alternate Power project through the Nanotechnology-Lubrication task at Glenn Research Center. The hemispherical alumina-yttria stabilized zirconia ceramic pins are made under the NASA Alternate Fuels Foundation Technologies funding in NASA’s Higher Operating Temperature Propulsion Components (HOTPC) project at Glenn Research Center. The authors gratefully acknowledge Aaron J. Tomasek, Gordon M. Berger, and Richard J. Mondry II for assistance with the experiments, David R. Hull for the TEM, and Duane J. Dixon for the SEM.


  • Atmosphere
  • Durability
  • Friction
  • Multiwalled carbon nanotube
  • Solid lubrication
  • Vacuum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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