Volume 84, Number 4, November 2008
Article Number 46004
Number of page(s) 5
Section Condensed Matter: Structural, Mechanical and Thermal Properties
Published online 21 November 2008
EPL, 84 (2008) 46004
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/84/46004

Contact mechanics with adhesion: Interfacial separation and contact area

C. Yang1, B. N. J. Persson1, J. Israelachvili2 and K. Rosenberg2

1   Institut für FestköperForschung, Forschungszentrum Jülich - D-52425 Jülich, Germany, EU
2   Department of Chemical Engineering, University of California - Santa Barbara, CA 93106, USA

received 26 August 2008; accepted in final form 21 October 2008; published November 2008
published online 21 November 2008

We study the adhesive contact between elastic solids with randomly rough, self-affine fractal surfaces. We present molecular-dynamics (MD) simulation results for the interfacial stress distribution and the wall-wall separation. We compare the MD results for the relative contact area and the average interfacial separation, with the prediction of the contact mechanics theory of Persson. We find good agreement between theory and the simulation results. We apply the theory to the system studied by Benz et al. (J. Phys. Chem. B110 (2006) 11884) involving polymer in contact with polymer, but in this case the adhesion gives only a small modification of the interfacial separation as a function of the squeezing pressure.

68.35.Np - Adhesion.
81.40.Pq - Friction, lubrication, and wear.
46.55.+d - Tribology and mechanical contacts.

© EPLA 2008