Biocompatible β Ti–45Nb (wt%) alloys were subjected to different methods of severe plastic deformation (SPD) in order to increase the mechanical strength without increasing the low Young׳s modulus thus avoiding the stress shielding effect. The mechanical properties, microstructural changes and texture evolution were investigated, by means of tensile, microhardness and nanoindentation tests, as well as TEM and XRD. Significant increases of hardness and ultimate tensile strength up to a factor 1.6 and 2, respectively, could be achieved depending on the SPD method applied (hydrostatic extrusion – HE, high pressure torsion – HPT, and rolling and folding – R&F), while maintaining the considerable ductility. Due to the high content of β-stabilizing Nb, the initial lattice structure turned out to be stable upon all of the SPD methods applied. This explains why with all SPD methods the apparent Young׳s modulus measured by nanoindentation did not exceed that of the non-processed material. For its variations below that level, they could be quantitatively related to changes in the SPD-induced texture, by means of calculations of the Young׳s modulus on basis of the texture data which were carefully measured for all different SPD techniques and strains. This is especially true for the significant decrease of Young׳s modulus for increasing R&F processing which is thus identified as a texture effect. Considering the mechanical biocompatibility (percentage of hardness over Young׳s modulus), a value of 3–4% is achieved with all the SPD routes applied which recommends them for enhancing β Ti-alloys for biomedical applications.
Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials – Elsevier
Published: Sep 1, 2016
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