Tribological characterisation of Zr-based bulk metallic glass in simulated physiological media

Q. Chen, Kang Cheung Chan, L. Liu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Due to their excellent wear resistant properties and high strength, as well as a low Young's modulus, Zr-based bulk metallic glasses (BMGs) are potentially suitable biomaterials for low-friction arthroplasty. The wear characteristics of the Zr60.14Cu22.31Fe4.85Al9.7Ag3bulk amorphous alloy against ultra-high-molecular- weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) compared to a CoCrMo/UHMWPE combination were investigated in two different wear screening test devices, reciprocating and unidirectional. Hank's solution and sterile calf bovine serum were selected as the lubricant fluid media. It was found that different fluid media had insignificant effect on polyethylene wear against BMG counterfaces. The wear behaviour obtained on both test devices demonstrated that Zr-based BMG achieved UHMWPE counterface wear rates superior to conventional cast CoCrMo alloy, where the wear rate of UHMWPE is decreased by over 20 times. The tribological performance of these joints is superior to that of conventional metal-on-polymer designs. Contact angle measurements suggested that the advantage of BMG over a CoCrMo alloy counterface is attributed to its highly hydrophilic surfaces.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3705-3715
Number of pages11
JournalPhilosophical Magazine
Issue number28
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2011


  • biomaterial
  • friction
  • metallic glass
  • tribology
  • wear

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics


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