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Tribology has been defined as:

Tribology is systems oriented and, therefore, spans a large number and wide variety of scientific and technical fields. These include: materials science, mechanical engineering, surface science, rheology, lubricant engineering, biomaterials, biomechanics, biomedical engineering, chemistry, physics, biology, nano and microtechnology.

Reducing friction and wear of mechanical systems, which leads to a reduction in energy consumption and an increase in durability, is of great economic and environmental interest. Advances in these areas have been achieved through, for example, the new design of mechanical systems, improvements to lubricants, and the development of advanced materials and coatings. In implants in the human body, solutions are being sought for problems such as bio-compatibility, corrosion and wear. All of these developments require strong collaborations between scientists and engineers of widely differing expertise.