antifriction mechanism, inorganic additives, nanomaterials, tribological performances


In this paper, we review recent research developments regarding the tribological performances of a series of inorganic nano-additives in lubricating fluids. First, we examine several basic types of inorganic nanomaterials, including metallic nanoparticles, metal oxides, carbon nanomaterials, and "other" nanomaterials. More specifically, the metallic nanoparticles we examine include silver, copper, nickel, molybdenum, and tungsten nanoparticles; the metal oxides include CuO, ZnO, Fe3O4, TiO2, ZrO2, Al2O3, and several double-metal oxides; the carbon nanomaterials include fullerene, carbon quantum dots, carbon nanotubes, graphene, graphene oxides, graphite, and diamond; and the "other" nanomaterials include metal sulfides, rare-earth compounds, layered double hydroxides, clay minerals, hexagonal boron nitride, black phosphorus, and nanocomposites. Second, we summarize the lubrication mechanisms of these nano-additives and identify the factors affecting their tribological performance. Finally, we briefly discuss the challenges faced by inorganic nanoparticles in lubrication applications and discuss future research directions. This review offers new perspectives to improve our understanding of inorganic nano-additives in tribology, as well as several new approaches to expand their practical applications.

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