Reasons for the Action
The field of current nanotribology is at a stage comparable to that of semiconductors thirty years ago when the advent of man-made heterostructures brought the field from engineering back to physics, leading to new fundamental discoveries like the Quantum Hall effect and to several Nobel prizes as well as to a wealth of revolutionary devices that have shaped our current society. Like then, the step from bulk materials to man-made nanoscale structures is crucial for new effects and functionalities. Being much more interdisciplinary, however, nanotribology cannot count yet on a coherent community, on established conferences and discussion forums.
This Action is mainly designed to trigger scientific/technological advances. It will complement existing national research programs, connecting all groups active in nanotribology, thus fostering a concerted European scientific effort. Highly rewarding goals of this Action are: (i) scientifically, sharing knowledge and fostering collaboration within Europe on designing methods, algorithms, and solutions to study, understand, and eventually control friction, adhesion and wear, especially at the micro and nano scales; (ii) strategically, strengthening the world leadership of Europe in this crucial field; (iii) creating a publicly visible point of contact for industrial developers and technological decision makers who need advice or consulting on friction and wear on small scales.
Besides, this Action will provide Early-Stage Researchers (ESR) with a coordinated international environment, where they can develop a successful career. Appropriate gender-balance policies will make sure that equal opportunities will be given to all researchers, supporting in particular women scientists.