The effects of prescribed viscosity variations across a hydrodynamic lubricating film are studied. The film is strictly one dimensional and end effects are neglected. The viscosity variations are given by three families of curves. The considerable decreases (in the limit 100 percent) and occasional increases in the coefficient of friction that can occur for constant film thickness and load-carrying capacity are evaluated and the results are presented in terms of parametric curves. Important physical situations where these viscosity variations may be observed or produced are described.

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