Lubrication and rheology of lubricants :
This theme aims at a quantitative prediction of friction in the elastohydrodynamic lubrication regime. The challenge is to trace the properties of the lubricant in an ultra-confined contact situation, by combining local probe techniques and numerical simulation. We propose a fine modelling of the physical processes involved in order to complete the existing rheological models, and by freeing ourselves from unsatisfactory empirical approaches.
Tribology of solid interfaces :
The challenges to be taken up are centred around the writing of the mechanisms of energy production and transfer in connection with the local dynamics of contact (for example: interfacial wave propagations) which are at the origin of both microstructural modifications (nano-structuring, atomic raking) on the scale of the skin of the 1st bodies and physico-chemical reactions on the scale of the 1st and 3rd bodies (evolution of the reactivity under mechanical constraints and confinement)
Confined complex fluids :
This theme is interested in the study of the local structuring and shearing of complex media (such as ionic liquids, (bio)polymer solutions, fats, suspensions, etc.), and in the integration of local behaviours into larger scale models, which are the only ones capable of describing mass and energy equilibria. The challenge is to determine the proper mode of velocity accommodation and lift in media where conformations are formed naturally or under the effect of confinement.