Tribological Characteristics of Al2O3 Nanocomposites for Joint Prostheses

Carlos Morillo, Yoshinori Sawae, Teruo Murakami

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    In this study the tribological characteristics of a sliding pair of Al2O3 nanocomposites against Al2O3 were investigated. Al2O3 nanocomposites are proposed as a candidate material for the fabrication of prostheses. Nanopowders of Al2O3 (AKP 50, 300 nm), Y-TZP; tetragonal zirconia polycrystal stabilized with 8mol % of yttria (TZ-8YS, 100 nm) and TiO2 (PS-25, 50 nm) were mixed and hot pressed. A ball-on-plate tribometer was used for the wear test. The nanocomposite plate specimen was rubbed against the Al2O3 ball at a frequency of 1 Hz for 1 h, with a load of 49 N. Distilled water and fetal bovine serum solution (FBSS) were used as lubricants. Mechanical properties were estimated using the indentation method. It was found that the specific wear rate of Al2O3 nanocomposites was about 2–6×10−8 mm3/Nm and the coefficient of friction from 0.3 to 0.5 for FBSS. The nanocomposites containing 15mol% Y-TZP (ATZ150) had the lowest wear rate (1.77×10−8 mm3/Nm) for FBSS. Worn surfaces were observed using SEM. Furthermore, AFM, XPS were used to study the effect of the serum lubricant on the articulating surface of the Al2O3 nanocomposites, and AlPO4 was found on the wear track of the samples tested in FBSS.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)356-367
    Number of pages12
    JournalJournal of Biomechanical Science and Engineering
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2008

    All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

    • Biomedical Engineering


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