3D Surface Roughness and Wear Measurement, Analysis and Inspection

Surface Roughness, Texture, and Tribology Classes

“This was one of the best classes I have ever taken. It really helped me understand surface texture and simply it made me a better inspector. It helped me see the bigger picture. I guarantee you’re going to want to learn more.”

Agustin Guzmán, Inspector at SpaceX

Are you interested in learning about surface texture, wear, friction, sealing, surface energy, paint appearance, and more?

Dr. Don Cohen, one of the country’s foremost experts in surface roughness, presents the Surface Roughness, Texture and Tribology short courses, covering a broad range of topics on surface texture and its impact on functionality. These metrology training courses are designed for scientists, engineers, and technicians working in the fields of automotive, aerospace, materials, polymers, and others. No prior study is required.

Watch a video introduction to the Surface Texture and Tribology class

In-Person Classes

“I Highly recommend this course!” – Ivan Yermolenko

Dr. Cohen offers several in-person course options throughout the year. Choose the class that best fits your schedule and needs.

The one-day Surface Metrology course focuses on surface measurement, with in-depth case studies and applications.

The two-day Roughness, Texture & Tribology course includes lectures on surface metrology, tribology, and related topics.

Light breakfast and lunch will be provided each day.


• Intro to surface texture …why is it important?

• Instruments for surface roughness measurement (stylus, optical, AFM…)

• Filtering of surface texture measurements (2RC, Gaussian…)

• Parameters for surface texture analysis (Sa, Spk, Ssc, etc.)

• Applications and Case Studies


• Intro to surface texture …why is it important?

• Instruments for surface roughness measurement (stylus, optical, AFM…)

• Filtering of surface texture measurements (2RC, Gaussian…)

• Parameters for surface texture analysis (Sa, Spk, Ssc, etc.)

• Wear (scoring, scuffing, galling, wear volume, wear depth…)

• Friction (how does surface texture relate to friction?)

• Sealing (gaskets, O-rings, lip seals, piston rings…)

• Surface energy/surface texture

• Correlation between non-contact and contacting systems

• Data analysis (T-Test, F-Test, principle components, regression…)

• Specifying surface texture (symbology)

• Surface Metrology Strategy (project approach).

All presentation material are provided via email (PDF) prior to the class. Depending on the time and interest, certain presentation modules may be eliminated or substituted. 

“It was not until I found your videos that so many unanswered questions were answered. The videos you created that teach surface texture and tribology have been a tremendous help!” — Michael Bower, Analytical Chemist

Please contact us if you’d like us to inform you about upcoming live classes, and check out our online classes below.

Online Classes

FULL Surface Roughness, Texture, and Tribology Short Course online – Can’t attend the Surface Roughness, Texture, and Tribology class in person? The full course is also available online through udemy.com, as well as selected, individual modules. It’s an affordable way to learn surface texture and tribology, at your own pace.

Select course modules are also available on udemy.com. These affordable modules let you tailor your learning to just the information that you need.

Filtering for Roughness, Waviness & Form – The process of separating surface texture into short-wavelength roughness, and higher-wavelength waviness and form. Much of the following course material builds on this module, so we recommend it as a starting point.

Surface Roughness Parameters – Introduction to common surface texture parameters; amplitude, spatial, hybrid and functional parameters; parameter definitions and meanings; strengths and shortcomings of each parameter for describing various part functionalities.

Friction and surface roughness, Real Area of Contact and Apparent Area of Contact, how the difference affects frictional force, Leonardo Da Vinci, Michigan Metrology

5. Dry Friction (Sliding Friction) – The physics of dry, sliding friction; methods for quantifying friction; the relationship between surface texture and friction; the concept of “real contact”; surface texture parameters that relate to, and change with, dry friction.

Customized Classes for your Company

The Surface Texture and Tribology short course can be tailored to your company’s specific needs and interests. A custom class can include all or portions of the material listed above.

Dr. Don Cohen, one of the country’s foremost experts in surface roughness, has been leading customized training sessions in surface roughness, friction, wear, sealing, finishes, and more for nearly two decades. His courses cover a broad range of topics on surface texture and how it impacts functionality.

Contact Us to learn more about customized surface roughness training, or to get a quote for a custom class.

About Don Cohen, Instructor

For more than thirty years, Dr. Donald Cohen has been measuring 3D surface roughness and analyzing the result to solve problems related to “squeaks, leaks, friction, wear, appearance, adhesion, and other issues.” Dr. Cohen formed Michigan Metrology in 1994 to provide 3D Surface MicroTexture Measurement and Analysis, serving industries including automotive, aerospace, medical devices, materials, and many others.

Throughout his career, Dr. Cohen has worked to advance the understanding and application of surface texture analysis, through his involvement in standards committees, industry groups, and other activities. His annual classes, surface texture parameters glossary, and surface-related articles and videos have helped many quality and manufacturing professionals to understand the concepts of surface texture and friction, and to apply them in their work and research.

Dr. Cohen has developed this class over the past 20 years having presented the material at numerous client locations as part of his training and consulting activities. The class is offered to a general audience in the Livonia, MI area, typically once a year. 

Dr. Cohen has an undergraduate degree in Physics from the University of Michigan, Dearborn, and graduate degrees in Physics and Optical Sciences from the University of Arizona.

Contact Us today for more information on our live and customized classes.