A reliable measuring tool of surface degradation can therefore result in substantial savings in time and money for the development of machine components, lubricants, wear resistant coatings, surface treatments process, and for the control/optimization of components life time during production sites maintenance. For this purpose, Thin Layer Activation (TLA) has much to offer since it makes possible to monitor in situ very small surface material losses under real operating conditions, often without the need of dismantling the working equipment. In this paper, an overview of the TLA technology is presented, which enables wear to be measured under real operating conditions by monitoring the loss of substance caused by surface degradation. It emphasizes the benefits that this technique can bring through already tested applications in the automotive, energy, and machinery industry. Paper includes a German-language abstract.