Fifty years of tribology


Severe wear in a bearing (photo: Jean-Jacques Milan)

Cambridge University is celebrating 50 years of tribology, the study of friction, wear, and lubrication.

Actually, this is a field that goes back to Leonardo da Vinci, but the name was only coined 50 years ago, when Peter Jost wrote an influential report on the costs associated with friction and wear. That report, published on 9 March 9 1966, estimated that that improvements in lubrication and maintenance in industry could save the British economy £500 million per year.

Today, tribology is recognised as an important part of mechanical engineering as well as of medical engineering. Thanks, Peter!


X-ray of an artificial hip joint


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