A wear simulation study of nanostructured CVD diamond-on-diamond articulation involving concave/convex mating surfaces

Academic Article


  • Using microwave plasma chemical vapor deposition, a 3-µm-thick nanostructured diamond layer was deposited onto polished, convex, and concave components that were machined from Ti–6Al–4V alloy. These components had the same radius of curvature, 25.4 mm. Wear testing of the surfaces was performed by rotating articulation of the diamond-deposited surfaces (diamond-on-diamond) with a load of 225 N for a total of 5 million cycles in bovine serum resulting in polishing of the diamond surface and formation of very shallow, linear wear grooves of less than 50 nm depth. The two diamond surfaces remained adhered to the components and polished each other to an average surface roughness that was reduced by as much as a factor of 80 for the most polished region located at the center of the condyle. Imaging of the surfaces showed that the initial wearing-in phase of the articulating surfaces by the end of the 5 million cycles. Atomic force microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and surface profilometry were used to characterize the surfaces and verify that the diamond remained intact and uniform over the surface, thereby protecting the underlying metal. These wear simulation results show that diamond deposition on Ti alloy has potential application for joint replacement devices with improved longevity over existing devices made of cobalt chrome and ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Baker PA; Thompson RG; Catledge SA
  • Start Page

  • 385
  • End Page

  • 393
  • Volume

  • 13
  • Issue

  • 2