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Analysis of the Interfacial Molecular Behavior of a Lubrication Film of n‑Dodecane Containing Stearic Acid under Lubricating Conditions by Sum Frequency Generation Spectroscopy

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journal contribution
posted on 29.11.2016, 00:00 by Seiya Watanabe, Miki Nakano, Koji Miyake, Shinya Sasaki
The molecular behavior of n-dodecane with added stearic acid at a friction interface was studied using sum frequency generation (SFG) spectroscopy and a tribometer. In the case of n-dodecane with stearic acid, under dynamic conditions, a strong peak from the symmetric stretching vibrational mode of methylene, which was not observed under static conditions, appears. However, this strong methylene peak was not observed in the case of only n-dodecane. The SFG spectrum in the C–H stretching mode region of n-dodecane-d26 with stearic acid in the dynamic condition was analogous to that in the static condition. These results indicate that the interfacial structure of stearic acid does not change under sliding condition. The n-dodecane on a stearic acid adsorption film is highly aligned. Moreover, from the sliding direction dependence of the SFG measurements, the molecular orientation of n-dodecane was deduced: n-dodecane on stearic acid adsorption films orient parallel to the sliding direction. These results have shown that the stearic acid adsorption film behaves as solid-like, which has also been mentioned in previous studies. Further, our results revealed a new function of stearic acid: the stearic acid adsorption film induces the formation of a well-defined n-dodecane interfacial structure and forces the n-dodecane molecules to orient along the sliding direction at the friction interface.