microstructure, tribology, surface durability, SU8, DLC


In tribology (the study of friction, wear, and lubrication), it is known that micro-textured surfaces can reduce friction due to decreased contact area between two surfaces. The problem with many micro-textures, however, is their inability to withstand significant amounts of wear, thus limiting their potential uses and overall effectiveness. In this study, connected and isolated microstructures of SU8, a negative tone photoresist, coated with and without diamond-like carbon (DLC), were designed to investigate the effects of these microstructures and DLC coating on the tribological performance of a surface. Friction and wear studies were conducted using a tribometer; surface topography and wear were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), optical microscope, and contact profilometry. Results indicate that the coefficient of friction and surface wear were significantly reduced by texturing the surface with connected microstructures coated with DLC. Therefore, these microstructures show potential to be used for tribological applications.

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