Lifestyle

Tribology isn't just for machines; it's found all around us in our everyday life. From skin creams to pet foods, tribology is shaping how we interact with the world on a daily basis.

Lifestyle

The lifestyle industry is ever growing and while it is a relatively new area for tribological research compared to mechanical systems, research in this field has grown rapidly in more recent decades. This research is spread across the wide range of sectors that “lifestyle” covers and many researchers around the world are utilising PCS’ instruments to facilitate these studies.

One example of an area of intense and expanding research is the tribology of personal care products. Researchers are working hard to link data from laboratory based tribological testing to what is reported by consumers. Doing this enables the objective, quantitative assessment of formulations. With bench top testing being substantially quicker and cheaper than most consumer panel testing, this process of tribological study enables more formulations to be tested and developed to result in the best possible product.

Using PCS’ instruments, the process of applying product to the skin can be mimicked and the frictional properties of the lubricant (e.g. skin cream) can be determined. Samples can be tested using specimens with similar properties to that of the skin or to custom, user defined profiles. The results produced can then be compared to market leading products and feedback from consumer testing.

Lifestyle industry research areas include:

  • Skin creams (cosmetic and medical)
  • Hair and shaving products
  • Dental pet foods
  • Cosmetics
  • Sports equipment design
  • Haptic feedback systems
  • Nail polish and varnish
  • Toothbrush design

Lifestyle Industry includes the following:

Personal Care

Personal Care

How a product feels when used is critical to a consumer's experience. Skin creams, exfoliates, toothpastes and more have been investigated

Haptics

Haptics

Touchscreen devices are continuing to become more common, so how we interact with them, how responsive they are and how they feel to use is continually being developed.

Watches

Watches

High end mechanical watches often have just one drop of oil in them to lubricate them for a lifetime. Making sure that oil performs exactly as required is therefore critical to a well functioning, long lasting watch.

Sports

Sports

Tribology is found in all levels of all sports, from the grip of a racket, to your skis on the slope and can even be a matter of life and death for climbers with their chalk.

Pet Care

Pet Care

Pets can benefit from improvements to teeth cleaning chews and humans can learn from how animals interact with their environments, like shark skin technology in racing swimming costumes.

Motor Sport

Motor Sport

Not only is tribology vital for engines, bearings and gearboxes. In motorsport even tyre and braking performance needs to be optimised through tribological investigation.

Coatings

Coatings

From non-stick pans to waterproof sprays, coatings are used everywhere and how they interact with the surfaces they come in contact with has been investigated.

Food & Beverage

Food & Beverage

The mouthfeel of products is a growing field. Research has been conducted on everything from the creaminess of dairy products to the astringency of wine.

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Lifestyle Industry Articles & Papers

Paper

Friction Behavior of Polymer Brush Immobilized Surfaces in Good Solvents

This chapter describes the tribological properties of well-defined high-density polymer brushes prepared by the “grafting-from” methods based on surface-initiated controlled …

This chapter describes the tribological properties of well-defined high-density polymer brushes prepared by the “grafting-from” methods based on surface-initiated controlled radical polymerization. The authors have demonstrated the enhanced lubrication and wear resistance of high-density polymer brushes, and the superior tribological properties in the good solvent. Macro- and microscopic frictional properties were examined by a ball-on-plate type tribotester and an AFM with a colloidal sphere-tip cantilever, respectively. Friction coefficients and adhesion forces of polymer brush surfaces depend on the compatibility to the solvents. The friction coefficient of charged polymer brushes was reduced to less than 0.1 under highly humid atmosphere, whereas the hydrophobic brushes represented friction coefficient reduction under hydrocarbon solvents. The high-density polymer brushes kept the low friction coefficient even over 100 reciprocating friction cycles, indicating the excellent wear resistance. The lubrication mechanism in good solvents was investigated by ultra-thin-film interferometry study. The gap between rotating disc and loading sphere showed significant increase with increasing sliding velocity, indicating that the charged polymer brushes promoted the formation of hydrodynamic fluid lubrication layer.

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Paper

Tribological Method to Measure Lubricating Properties of Dairy Products

Tribology has a growing interest in oral texture and sensory research due to its ability to assess certain properties of …

Tribology has a growing interest in oral texture and sensory research due to its ability to assess certain properties of the food during the complex oral processing that cannot be explained by its bulk texture and rheology. Developing a reliable, low cost and easy-to-use tribometer applicable to a wide variety of food products is still a big challenge to researchers. In this work, a simple method to measure lubricating properties (friction coefficient) of dairy products is presented using a newly introduced tribometer coupled with a widely used rheometer. Pasteurized milks (fat contents from 0.1% to 4.9%) and cream cheeses (fats content: 0.5%, 5.5%, 11.6%) were chosen as representative dairy products and their friction coefficients were measured as a function of entrainment speed of the tribometer. The friction coefficients of the samples at low entrainment speed generating low shear rate (similar to the shear rate in mouth) were significantly different between the samples at each fat levels. Thus, this method is capable of differentiating samples with different fat contents both in liquid or semi-solid forms. This suggests a promising application of this technique for a quick assessment of the sensory mouthfeel of various dairy products in relation to fat content.

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