The role of damping in ultrasonic friction reduction

Rebecca Fenton Friesen, Michaël Wiertlewski, J. Edward Colgate

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

14 Scopus citations


We observed the dynamic interaction between a fingertip and an ultrasonically vibrating plate using Laser Doppler Vibrometry in order to investigate the causes of ultrasonic friction reduction. Observations were made both for a human finger and for artificial fingertips constructed to exhibit different amounts of damping. The data suggest that fingertip dynamics play an important role in friction reduction. In particular, the fingertips were all found to exhibit forced oscillations in response to the plate motion, but with different relative phases. Fingertips with lower damping oscillated more in-phase with the plate, while fingertips with higher damping oscillated more out-of-phase with the plate, and also exhibited greater friction reduction. These results are reflected in a model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationIEEE Haptics Symposium 2016, HAPTICS 2016 - Proceedings
EditorsSeungmoon Choi, Katherine J. Kuchenbecker, Greg Gerling
PublisherIEEE Computer Society
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781509009039
StatePublished - Apr 29 2016
Event24th IEEE Haptics Symposium 2016, HAPTICS 2016 - Philadelphia, United States
Duration: Apr 8 2016Apr 11 2016

Publication series

NameIEEE Haptics Symposium, HAPTICS
ISSN (Print)2324-7347
ISSN (Electronic)2324-7355


Other24th IEEE Haptics Symposium 2016, HAPTICS 2016
CountryUnited States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Human-Computer Interaction

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