In-situ monitoring of the electrochemical behavior of cellular structured biomedical Ti-6Al-4V alloy fabricated by electron beam melting in simulated physiological fluid.

Author(s) Gai, X.; Bai, Y.; Li, S.; Hou, W.; Hao, Y.; Zhang, X.; Yang, R.; Misra, R.D.K.
Journal Acta Biomater
Date Published 2020 Apr 01

Ti-6Al-4V alloys with cellular structure fabricated by additive manufacturing are currently of significant interest because their modulus is comparable to bone and the cellular structure allows the cells to penetrate and exchange nutrients, promoting osseointegration. We describe here a unique simulation device that replaces the traditional steady electrochemistry approach, enabling in-situ study of variation of ion concentration and surface potential with pore depth for cellular structured Ti-6Al-4V alloys fabricated by electron beam melting (EBM) in phosphate buffered saline (PBS). This approach addresses the scientific gap on the electrochemical behavior of cellular structured titanium alloys. The study indicated that concentration of H and Cl increased with the increase of pore depth, while the surface potential decreased. The exposed surface of inner cellular structure was not corroded but passivated after immersing in PBS at 37 °C for 14 days, which was independent of pore depth. Furthermore, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Mott-Schottky (M-S) studies suggested that a thinner passive film containing a greater donor density was formed on the surface of cellular structured Ti-6Al-4V alloy at the deepest pore depth. This is attributed to insufficient oxygen supply and Cladsorption on the surface inside the pores. STATEMENT OF SIGNIFICANCE: Porous titanium alloys are promising implants in biomedical applications. However, it is a challenge to accurately characterize the corrosion behavior of porous titanium alloys with complex pore structure using traditional electrochemical methods. In this study, we have adopted a special device to simulate the environment within the pore structure. The variation in ion concentration and surface potential of Ti-6Al-4V fabricated by EBM with pore depth was in-situ monitored. After immersing in PBS for 14 days, Ti-6Al-4V exhibited good corrosion properties and the samples with less than 60 mm pore depth were not corroded but passivated. Also, we analyzed the difference in corrosion property at different pore depth. This type of in-situ corrosion performance monitoring in EBM-produced Ti-6Al-4V has not been previously studied.

DOI 10.1016/j.actbio.2020.02.008
ISSN 1878-7568
Citation Acta Biomater. 2020;106:387395.

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