Influence of aging heat treatment on mechanical properties of biomedical Ti-Zr based ternary alloys containing niobium

E Kobayashi, H Doi, T Yoneyama, H Hamanaka, I R Gibson, S M Best, J C Shelton, W Bonfield

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Titanium-zirconium based alloys containing a small amount of niobium were investigated in order to evaluate their possible use as biomedical materials. Zirconium, which belongs to the IVa group, is known to have good corrosion resistance and biocompatibility similar to titanium. As the titanium-zirconium system shows a complete solid solution, a wide variation of alloy design is available and large quantities of solid-solution hardening must be possible. Niobium, having a beta-phase stabilizing effect, was chosen as a ternary element in order to control desirably the microstructure. There have been no reports which suggest its harm to a living body. The alloys containing 2% or 3% niobium showed the highest hardness value after aging heat treatment at 773 K. In contrast to this, no alteration of hardness was seen in specimens aged at 1073 K. Through conventional X-ray diffractometry and in situ X-ray analysis using a hot stage, beta-phase precipitation in the a matrix was identified. From the above results, it is concluded that alloys containing 2%-3% niobium are hopeful candidates for new kinds of biomedical alloys, when they are heat treated under suitable conditions. (C) 1998 Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)625-630
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Materials Science: Materials in Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1998

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