Electrotunable friction with ionic liquid lubricants

Fernando Bresme*, Alexei A. Kornyshev*, Susan Perkin*, Michael Urbakh*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Room-temperature ionic liquids and their mixtures with organic solvents as lubricants open a route to control lubricity at the nanoscale via electrical polarization of the sliding surfaces. Electronanotribology is an emerging field that has a potential to realize in situ control of friction—that is, turning the friction on and off on demand. However, fulfilling its promise needs more research. Here we provide an overview of this emerging research area, from its birth to the current state, reviewing the main achievements in non-equilibrium molecular dynamics simulations and experiments using atomic force microscopes and surface force apparatus. We also present a discussion of the challenges that need to be solved for future applications of electrotunable friction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)848-858
Number of pages11
JournalNature Materials
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2022


FundersFunder number
National Science Foundation of China and Israel Science Foundation3191/19
Leverhulme TrustRPG-2016-223
European Research Council676861
Israel Science Foundation1141/18


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