Research Papers: Biotribology

Effects of Nanostructured Additives on Boundary Lubrication for Potential Artificial Joint Applications

[+] Author and Article Information
Alice Pendleton, Prasenjit Kar, Subrata Kundu, Sahar Houssamy

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-3123

Hong Liang1

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-3123hliang@tamu.edu


Corresponding author.

J. Tribol 132(3), 031201 (Jun 04, 2010) (5 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4001457 History: Received June 04, 2009; Revised March 02, 2010; Published June 04, 2010; Online June 04, 2010

Water-based fluids containing nanostructured fullerene C60 and 18-crown ether-6 were investigated. The effects of those nanostructured additives on the tribological performance of titanium and its alloys as potential biomaterials were analyzed. Experimentally, tribology tests were conducted using a Ti–6Al–4V ball against a disk made of pure titanium as a simplified model of the material rubbing pair. Lubrication mechanisms were studied by comparing the nanostructures, viscosities, and frictions. Results showed that the fullerene C60 in deionized water provided the lowest viscosity and friction. Crown ether, on the other hand, provided high friction and shear. Our analysis indicated that the fullerene was weakly interacted with water compared with the crown ether, resulting in an extended low friction in the boundary lubrication regime. The crown ether required extra energy in order to slide or roll. This led to a high friction. This finding opens the possibilities for lubrication design and optimization for biological and engineering applications in general.

Copyright © 2010 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Nanostructured molecules: (a) fullerene; (b) crown ether

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Figure 2

Tribometer setup

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Figure 3

Rheological measurement

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Figure 4

Tribiological measurements: (a) an example of the friction coefficient against time in an extended test; (b) average wear depth; and (c) average surface roughness of the worn surface using the AFM area scan

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Figure 5

SEM micrographs of the wear track surfaces: (a) original titanium surface for the reference; (b) wear track surface obtained in the crown ether with DI; and (c) wear track surface obtained from sliding in FU+DI. The scale bars are 16 μm.

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Figure 6

Friction coefficient against the Sommerfeld grouping number in the Stribeck curve: η⋅v/L

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Figure 7

TEM analysis of the solid additives before and after the wear tests: (a) CE before; (b) CE after; (c) FU before; and (d) FU after



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