A combination of thin film colorimetric interferometry and phase shifting interferometry has been used to study the effect of slide-to-roll ratio on the micro-elastohydrodynamic action and asperity-contact mechanism on the real asperity scale. The phase shifting interferometry was used to measure in-situ initial undeformed rough surface profiles and thin film colorimetric interferometry provided accurate information about micro-EHD film thickness behaviour over a wide range of operating conditions. Lubricant film thickness distribution within mixed EHD contact has been found to change significantly as a function of a slide-roll ratio. A high resolution color camera has enabled a closer look at film thickness changes in the vicinity of surface irregularities that helped to describe these processes in detail. Obtained results indicate the presence of either a boundary film less than 1 nm thick or some solid-like contact in front of roughness features for positive slide to roll ratios. No such a local film thickness reduction has been found for negative slide-to-roll ratio conditions.

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