J. Brandon McClimon



Ph.D., Materials Science & Engineering (2018), University of Pennsylvania

M.S., Engineering Physics (2013), University of Virginia 

B.S., Engineering Physics, Nuclear Engineering Concentration (2003), University of Michigan – Ann Arbor

Research Interests

My research focuses on developing an in-depth understanding of how nanoscale friction dynamics lead to the macroscale rate and state friction laws which describe the behavior of many systems, notably rock friction, which undergirds models helping us understand the frictional dynamics leading to earthquake activity.  Additionally, I am studying the behavior of glassy systems via the deformation of disordered colloidal packings with particle sizes below 100nm.  This work is being conducted predominantly with atomic force microscopy.


  • McClimon, J. B.; Hilbert, J.; Koshigan, K. D.; Fontaine, J.; Lukes, J. R.; Carpick, R. W. In Situ Growth and Characterization of Lubricious Carbon-Based Films Using Colloidal Probe Microscopy. Tribol Lett 2023, 71 (2), 39. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11249-023-01712-9.
  • Maguire, S. M.; McClimon, J. B.; Zhang, A. C.; Keller, A. W.; Bilchak, C. R.; Ohno, K.; Carpick, R. W.; Composto, R. J. Nanoscale Structure–Property Relations in Self-Regulated Polymer-Grafted Nanoparticle Composite Structures. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2023. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsami.2c15786.
  • Milne, Z. B.; Hasz, K.; McClimon, J. B.; Castro, J.; Carpick, R. W. A Modified Multibond Model for Nanoscale Static Friction. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences 2022, 380 (2232), 20210342.
  • McClimon, J. B., Milne, Z., Hasz, K., Carpick, R. W. Linescan Lattice Microscopy: A Technique for the Accurate Measurement and Mapping of Lattice Spacing and Strain with Atomic Force Microscopy. Langmuir 2021, 37 (27), 8261-8269.
  • Zhang, D., Wen, C., McClimon, J. B., Masih Das, P., Zhang, Q., Leone, G. A., Mandyam, S. V., Drndić, M., Johnson Jr., A. T. C., Zhao, M.-Q. Rapid Growth of Monolayer MoSe2 Films for Large-Area Electronics. Advanced Electronic Materials 2021, 7 (6), 2001219.
  • Mangolini, F.; Koshigan, K. D.; Van Benthem, M. H.; Ohlhausen, J. A.; McClimon, J. B.; Hilbert, J.; Fontaine, J.; Carpick, R. W. How Hydrogen and Oxygen Vapor Affect the Tribochemistry of Silicon- and Oxygen-Containing Hydrogenated Amorphous Carbon under Low-Friction Conditions: A Study Combining X-Ray Absorption Spectromicroscopy and Data Science Methods. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2021, 13 (10), 12610–12621. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsami.1c00090.
  • McClimon, J. B.; Hilbert, J.; Lukes, J. R.; Carpick, R. W. Nanoscale Run-In of Silicon Oxide-Doped Hydrogenated Amorphous Carbon: Dependence of Interfacial Shear Strength on Sliding Length and Humidity. Tribol Lett 2020, 68 (3), 80. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11249-020-01319-4.
  • McClimon, J. B.; Lang, A. C.; Milne, Z.; Garabedian, N.; Moore, A. C.; Hilbert, J.; Mangolini, F.; Lukes, J. R.; Burris, D. L.; Taheri, M. L.; et al. Investigation of the Mechanics, Composition, and Functional Behavior of Thick Tribofilms Formed from Silicon- and Oxygen-Containing Hydrogenated Amorphous Carbon. Tribol Lett 2019, 67 (2), 48. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11249-019-1155-x.
  • Mangolini, F.; McClimon, J. B.; Segersten, J.; Hilbert, J.; Heaney, P.; Lukes, J. R.; Carpick, R. W. Silicon Oxide-Rich Diamond-Like Carbon: A Conformal, Ultrasmooth Thin Film Material with High Thermo-Oxidative Stability. Advanced Materials Interfaces 2019, 6 (2), 1801416. https://doi.org/10.1002/admi.201801416.
  • Hilbert, J.; Mangolini, F.; McClimon, J. B.; Lukes, J. R.; Carpick, R. W. Si Doping Enhances the Thermal Stability of Diamond-like Carbon through Reductions in Carbon-Carbon Bond Length Disorder. Carbon2018, 131, 72–78. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.carbon.2018.01.081.
  • Khare, H. S.; Gosvami, N. N.; Lahouij, I.; Milne, Z. B.; McClimon, J. B.; Carpick, R. W. Nanotribological Printing: A Nanoscale Additive Manufacturing Method. Nano Lett.2018. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.8b02505.
  • Mangolini, F.; Hilbert, J.; McClimon, J. B.; Lukes, J. R.; Carpick, R. W. Thermally Induced Structural Evolution of Silicon- and Oxygen-Containing Hydrogenated Amorphous Carbon: A Combined Spectroscopic and Molecular Dynamics Simulation Investigation. Langmuir2018, 34 (9), 2989–2995. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.langmuir.7b04266.
  • Mangolini, F.; Krick, B. A.; Jacobs, T. D. B.; Khanal, S. R.; Streller, F.; McClimon, J. B.; Hilbert, J.; Prasad, S. V.; Scharf, T. W.; Ohlhausen, J. A.; et al. Effect of Silicon and Oxygen Dopants on the Stability of Hydrogenated Amorphous Carbon under Harsh Environmental Conditions. Carbon2018, 130, 127–136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.carbon.2017.12.096.
  • Naylor, C. H.; Parkin, W. M.; Gao, Z.; Berry, J.; Zhou, S.; Zhang, Q.; McClimon, J. B.; Tan, L. Z.; Kehayias, C. E.; Zhao, M.-Q.; et al. Synthesis and Physical Properties of Phase-Engineered Transition Metal Dichalcogenide Monolayer Heterostructures. ACS Nano2017, 11 (9), 8619–8627. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsnano.7b03828.
  • Mangolini, F.; McClimon, J. B.; Carpick, R. W. Quantitative Evaluation of the Carbon Hybridization State by Near Edge X-Ray Absorption Fine Structure Spectroscopy. Anal. Chem.2016, 88 (5), 2817–2824. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.5b04525.
  • Monazami, E.; McClimon, J. B.; Rondinelli, J.; Reinke, P. Electronic Structure and Band Gap of Fullerenes on Tungsten Surfaces: Transition from a Semiconductor to a Metal Triggered by Annealing. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces2016, 8 (50), 34854–34862. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsami.6b10813.
  • Koshigan, K. D.; Mangolini, F.; McClimon, J. B.; Vacher, B.; Bec, S.; Carpick, R. W.; Fontaine, J. Understanding the Hydrogen and Oxygen Gas Pressure Dependence of the Tribological Properties of Silicon Oxide–Doped Hydrogenated Amorphous Carbon Coatings. Carbon2015, 93, 851–860. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.carbon.2015.06.004.
  • Mangolini, F.; McClimon, J. B.; Rose, F.; Carpick, R. W. Accounting for Nanometer-Thick Adventitious Carbon Contamination in X-Ray Absorption Spectra of Carbon-Based Materials. Anal. Chem.2014, 86 (24), 12258–12265. https://doi.org/10.1021/ac503409c.
  • McClimon, J. B.; Monazami, E.; Reinke, P. Interaction of C60 with Tungsten: Modulation of Morphology and Electronic Structure on the Molecular Length Scale. J. Phys. Chem. C2014, 118 (42), 24479–24489. https://doi.org/10.1021/jp506618b.

Book Chapter

  • Mangolini, F.; McClimon, J. B. Near Edge X-Ray Absorption Fine Structure Spectroscopy: A Powerful Tool for Investigating the Surface Structure and Chemistry of Solid Lubricants. In Advanced Analytical Methods in Tribology; Dienwiebel, M., De Barros Bouchet, M.-I., Eds.; Microtechnology and MEMS; Springer International Publishing: Cham, 2018; pp 63–106. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-99897-8_3.