Technical Resources

Dynamic Friction Tester (DF Tester)

dynamic friction tester header imageThe Dynamic Friction Tester (DF Tester) is a portable instrument for measuring pavement surface friction as a function of speed and under various conditions. The instrument is comprised of a measuring unit and a control unit; an x-y plotter or laptop can be used to record data. The measuring unit consists of a disc made to rotate horizontally at a specified velocity before being lowered onto a wetted test surface for measurement of friction. The torque-generated by the resistance between the test surface and spring-loaded rubber "sliders" attached to the underside of the rotating disc-is continuously monitored and converted to a measurement of friction.


Applicable Test Standard

ASTM E1911, Measuring Paved Surface Frictional Properties Using the Dynamic Friction Tester


Device Features (Saito et al. 1996)

  • Measured values are a continuous spectrum of dynamic coefficient of friction with good reproducibility.
  • Measurement can be made in a very short time.
  • The device is designed to be compact and easy to handle.
  • Coefficient of friction is reported as a function of speed at a contact pressure similar to that of typical motor vehicles.
  • The device is powered by 12V DC (e.g., battery of vehicle transporting the device).
  • Coefficient of friction is graphically plotted in a continuous spectrum for each measurement.
  • The standard rubber of the slider assembly is synthetic rubber meeting ASTM E501.
  • The slider assembly can be easily replaced onsite, allowing the friction characteristics of different rubber materials to be investigated


Dimensions and Weight

DF Tester: 540 x 590 x 380 mm (21-1/4 x 23-1/4 x 15 in)

                    17 kg (37 lbs) [27 kg (60 lbs) with carrying case]


Controller: 470 x 630 x 170 mm (18-1/2 x 25 x 6-3/4 in)

                    11 kg (24 lbs)



Saito, K., T. Horiguchi, A. Kasahara, H. Abe, and J.J. Henry. 1996. "Development of Portable Tester for Measuring Skid Resistance and Its Speed Dependency on Pavement Surfaces." Transportation Research Record, No. 1536. Washington, D.C.


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