Stabilizing stick-slip friction

Rosario Capozza*, Shmuel M. Rubinstein, Itay Barel, Michael Urbakh, Jay Fineberg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Even the most regular stick-slip frictional sliding is always stochastic, with irregularity in both the intervals between slip events and the sizes of the associated stress drops. Applying small-amplitude oscillations to the shear force, we show, experimentally and theoretically, that the stick-slip periods synchronize. We further show that this phase locking is related to the inhibition of slow rupture modes which forces a transition to fast rupture, providing a possible mechanism for observed remote triggering of earthquakes. Such manipulation of collective modes may be generally relevant to extended nonlinear systems driven near to criticality.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number024301
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - 6 Jul 2011


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