This paper is an expanded treatment of the first part of the William Blum Lecture presented at SUR/FIN 1988 in Los Angeles by Dr. Morton Antler, 1987 AESF Scientific Achievement Award recipient. The subjects covered include friction, mechanical wear, fretting corrosion and frictional polymerization—all vital processes that affect the performance of contact finishes in electronic connectors. This paper is an expanded treatment of the first part of the William Blum Lecture presented at SUR/FIN 1988 in Los Angeles by Dr. Morton Antler, 1987 AESF Scientific Achievement Award recipient. The subjects covered include friction, mechanical wear, fretting corrosion and frictional polymerization—all vital processes that affect the performance of contact finishes in electronic connectors. The dominant wear mechanisms (i.e., adhesion, abrasion and fretting) are also discussed. Substrate and lubrication effects on the tribology of contact finishes will be elaborated on in a second paper covering the final half of Dr. Antler’s Blum Lecture to be published in the NASF Report for March 2014. A printable PDF version of this first part is available by clicking HERE. Introduction An electric contac...