Wear at the Nanoscale (image) University of Pennsylvania Caption This is an illustration of a silicon atomic force microscope tip sliding over the surface of a diamond punch. While in contact, silicon atoms from the tip bond with the carbon atoms of the diamond and are left behind as the tip slides on. Penn researchers conducted the wear experiment in a transmission electron microscope to observe this "atomic attrition" in action. A TEM image of the tip is inset. Credit Felice Macera Usage Restrictions With credit Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.