Characterization and corrosion study of NiTi laser surface alloyed with Nb or Co

K. W. Ng, Hau Chung Man, Tai Man Yue

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


The interest in NiTi alloys for medical applications has been steadily growing in recent years because of its biocompatibility, superelasticity and shape memory characteristics. However, the high Ni content in NiTi alloys is still a concern for its long-term applications in the human body. The release of Ni ion into the human body might cause serious problems, as Ni is capable of eliciting toxic and allergic responses. In view of this, surface modification to reduce the surface content of Ni and to improve the corrosion resistance, both of which would reduce Ni release, is an important step in the development of NiTi implants. In the present study, NiTi was surface alloyed with Nb or Co by laser processing. The fine dendritic structure characteristic of laser processing has been described in terms of rapid solidification. The amount of surface elemental Ni was reduced to 10% and 35% for the Nb-alloyed and Co-alloyed layer, respectively. The corrosion resistance in Hanks' solution (a simulated body fluid) was increased as evidenced by a reduced passive current density and a higher pitting potential for both the Nb- and Co-alloyed specimens. The composition and hardness profiles along the depth of the modified layer were correlated with the distribution of the dendrites. The microhardness of the alloyed layers was around 700-800 Hv, which was about four times that of the untreated NiTi specimens.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3269-3274
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Surface Science
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2011


  • Coblat
  • Corrosion resistance
  • Laser surface alloying
  • Niobium
  • NiTi

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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