In vitro electrochemical investigations of advanced stainless steels for applications as orthopaedic implants

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Potentiodynamic anodic polarization experiments on advanced stainless steels (SS), such as nitrogenbearing type 316L and 317L SS, were carried out in Hank’s solution (8 g NaCl, 0.14 g CaCl2, 0.4 g KC1, 0.35 g NaHCO3, 1 g glucose, 0.1 g NaH2PO4, 0.1 g MgCl2, 0.06 g Na2HPO4 2H2O, 0.06 g MgSO4 7H2O/1000 mL) in order to assess the pitting and crevice corrosion resistance. The results showed a significant improvement in the pitting and crevice corrosion resistance than the commonly used type 316L stainless steel implant material. The corrosion resistance was higher in austenitic stainless steels containing higher amounts of nitrogen. The pit-protection potential for nitrogen-bearing stainless steels was more noble than the corrosion potential indicating the higher repassivation tendency of actively growing pits in these alloys. The accelerated leaching study conducted for the above alloys showed very little tendency for leaching of metal ions, such as iron, chromium, and nickel, at different impressed potentials. This may be due to the enrichment of nitrogen and molybdenum at the passive film and metal interface, which could have impeded the releasing of metal ions through passive film.

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Correspondence to M. Sivakumar.

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Sivakumar, M., Mudali, U.K. & Rajeswari, S. In vitro electrochemical investigations of advanced stainless steels for applications as orthopaedic implants. J. of Materi Eng and Perform 3, 744–753 (1994).

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  • accelerated leaching
  • crevice corrosion
  • in vitro corrosion
  • nitrogen bearing stainless steels
  • orthopaedic implants
  • pitting corrosion