Contact and surface engineering

Contact engineering enables achieving effective contact interface with desired tribological properties by controlling contact loads, deformations, topography, roughness, material’s and other surface properties from nano to macro scale, as well as various surface technologies and modifications.

With proper theoretical analysis of contacts mechanics, topographical parameters in 2D and 3D and measurements on nano and macro scale we are designing the most appropriate surface and contact conditions for ecological and cost-effective technical solutions in tribological systems.

We are able to achieve that with research and solutions in the following fields:

  • Influence of microstructure, surface roughness and topography, mechanical properties of surfaces from nano to macro scale, surface machining and residual stress.
  • Application of surface layers: traditional methods of consolidation and thermo-chemical processes, hard protective and low shear coatings (PVD, CVD), multilayer and “duplex” coatings, surface caving.
  • Analysis of surface roughness deformation, real contact area, contact temperatures, plastic deformation and load bearing capacity of contacts.
  • Adsorption, wetting and surface energy determinate properties on nano scale with great impact on adhesion and friction in macro contacts.
  • Experimental characterization and modelling of surface properties and contacts on nano and macro scales ensure key information on bulk, surface and interface layers and thus the design and control of tribological properties.


Our scope also includes the following fields:

  • Compatibility of coatings for application on mechanical components and forming tools.
  • Research and development of coatings with ultra-low friction coefficient (µ < 0.01 in dry conditions).
  • Research of protective coatings behaviour at elevated temperatures (up to 600 °C).
  • Effect of residual stress on mechanical and tribological properties of components.
  • Effect of texturing parameters on tribological behaviour of contact surfaces.
  • Relationship between roughness parameters, surface texturing parameters and tribological behaviour of contact surfaces.
  • Modelling of tribological contact on nano and macro scale.
  • Effects of surface energy and wetting on lubricants slip and effects of adhesion and friction.

Reference Projects: