Polymers have lower resistance to scratching and wear than metals. Liquid lubricants work well for metals but not for polymers nor for polymer-based composites (PBCs). We review approaches for improvement of tribological properties of polymers based on inclusion of fillers. The fillers can be metallic or ceramic-with obvious consequences for electrical resistivity of the composites. Distinctions between effectiveness of micro- versus nano-particles are analyzed. For example, aluminum nanoparticles as filler are more effective for property improvement than microparticles at the same overall volumetric concentration. Prevention of local agglomeration of filler particles is discussed along with a technique to verify the prevention.
Keywords: polymer + nanofiller composites; polymer tribology; polymer wear; scratching of polymers.