Andreas A. Polycarpou

Department Head

James J. Cain Chair in Mechanical Engineering

Meinhard H. Kotzebue '14 Professor


Office: MEOB 100
Phone: 979.845.5337
Fax: 979.845.3081

Google Scholar Profile

Research Interests

Professor Polycarpou research interests include tribology, nanotechnology, microtribology related to miniature systems, magnetic storage, surface characterization, friction/vibration interaction, system dynamics and modeling, and experimental design and instrumentation. Specifically he studies micro/nanotribology of magnetic head disk interfaces and microelectromechanical systems. Recent emphasis has been on the tribology of devices for reduced energy and improved environmental-related impact, such as the use of carbon dioxide as a natural refrigerant and the use of surface treatments towards oil-lees machine operation. Polycarpou is the author of over 130 archival journal papers, numerous book chapters, volume proceedings, a dozen patents and numerous conference papers.

Awards & Honors

  • Listed in the Daily Illini “Incomplete List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students” for Fall 2001, Spring 2005, and Fall 2005


  • Ph.D. Mech. Eng., State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNY) 1994
  • M.S. Mech. Eng., State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNY) 1992
  • B.S. Mech. Eng., State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNY) 1990

Selected Publications

Eriten, M., C.-H. Lee, and A. A. Polycarpou, “Measurements of Tangential Stiffness and Damping of Mechanical Joints: Direct Versus Indirect Contact Resonance Methods,” Tribology International, 2012.

Eriten, M., D. T. Petlicki, A. A. Polycarpou, and L. A. Bergman, “Influence of Friction and Adhesion on the Onset of Plasticity during Normal Loading of Spherical Contacts,” Mechanics of Materials, 2012.

Vakis, A. I. and A. A. Polycarpou, “Modeling Sliding Contact of Rough Surfaces with Molecularly Thin Lubricants,” 45(1):37-48, 2011.

Mishra, S. P. and A. A. Polycarpou, “Tribological Studies of Unpolished Laser Surface Textures Under Starved Lubrication Conditions for use in Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Compressors,” Tribology International, 44(12):1890-1901, 2011.

Polychronopoulou, K., J. Lee, C. Tsotsos, N. G Demas, R. L. Meschewski, C. Rebholz, and A. A Polycarpou, “Deposition and Nanotribological Characterization of Sub-100 nm Thick Protective Ti-based Coatings for Miniature Applications,” Tribology Letters, 44(2):213- 221, 2011.

Eriten, M., A. A. Polycarpou, and L. A. Bergman, “Development of a Lap Joint Fretting Apparatus for Metal Interfaces,” Experimental Mechanics, 51(8):1405-1419, 2011.