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P. Kowalski, B. Łosiewicz and T. Goryczka


The NiTi shape memory alloys have been known from their application in medicine for implants as well as parts of medical devices. However, nickel belongs to the family of elements, which are toxic. Apart from the fact that nickel ions are bonded with titanium into intermetallic phase, their presence may cause allergy. In order to protect human body against release of nickel ions a surface of NiTi alloy can be modified with use of titanium nitrides, oxides or diamond-like layers. On the one hand the layers can play protective role but on the other hand they may influence shape memory behavior. Too stiff or too brittle layer can lead to limiting or completely blocking of the shape recovery. It was the reason to find more elastic covers for NiTi surface protection. This feature is characteristic for polymers, especially, biocompatible ones, which originate in nature. In the reported paper, the chitosan was applied as a deposited layer on surface of the NiTi shape memory alloy. Due to the fact that nature of shape memory effect is sensitive to thermo and/or mechanical treatments, the chitosan layer was deposited with use of electrophoresis carried out at room temperature. Various deposition parameters were checked and optimized. In result of that thin chitosan layer (0.45µm) was received on the NiTi alloy surface. The obtained layers were characterized by means of chemical and phase composition, as well as surface quality. It was found that smooth, elastic surface without cracks and/or inclusions can be produced applying 10V and relatively short deposition time - 30 seconds.

Open access

A. Smołka, G. Dercz, K. Rodak and B. Łosiewicz

Evaluation of corrosion resistance of the self-organized nanotubular oxide layers on the Ti13Zr13Nb alloy, has been carried out in 0.9% NaCl solution at the temperature of 37ºC. Anodization process of the tested alloy was conducted in a solution of 1M (NH4)2SO4 with the addition of 1 wt.% NH4F. The self-organized nanotubular oxide layers were obtained at the voltage of 20 V for the anodization time of 120 min. Investigations of surface morphology by scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM ) revealed that as a result of the anodization under proposed conditions, the single-walled nanotubes (SWNTs) can be formed of diameters that range from 10 to 32 nm. Corrosion resistance studies of the obtained nanotubular oxide layers and pure Ti13Zr13Nb alloy were carried out using open circuit potential, anodic polarization curves, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) methods. It was found that surface modification by electrochemical formation of the selforganized nanotubular oxide layers increases the corrosion resistance of the Ti13Zr13Nb alloy in comparison with pure alloy.

Open access

M. Szklarska, G. Dercz, J. Rak, W. Simka and B. Łosiewicz

This work reports on determination of the influence of passivation type of Ti15wt.%Mo implant alloy surface on its corrosion resistance in simulated body fluids. The alloy under investigation was subjected to natural self-passivation in air, and forced passivation by autoclaving in steam, boiling in 30 % solution of H2O2, and electrochemical passivation in 0.9 % NaCl solution. Resistance of the passivated Ti15Mo alloy to pitting corrosion was studied at 37ºC in 0.9 % NaCl solution using open circuit potential method, anodic polarization curves, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). Comparative estimation of the determined parameters of corrosion resistance revealed that the obtained passive layers improve anticorrosive properties of the tested alloy. Surface of the alloy subjected to passivation in steam autoclave reveals the highest protection against pitting corrosion. Anodic potentiodynamic curves showed that the Ti15Mo alloy after different passivation types of the surface is characterized by a lack of susceptibility to pitting corrosion up to potential of 9 V. Based on the EIS investigations, the thickness of the formed oxide layers (TiO2, anatase) was determined to be in the range from 2.0 to 7.8 nm in dependence on the applied type of passivation. It was ascertained that electrochemical properties of the Ti15Mo alloy and possibility of its surface passivation using simple methods, make it an attractive material for use in biomedicine for long-term implants.