Functionally Gradient Hard Carbon Composites for Improved Adhesion and Wear

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Title: Functionally Gradient Hard Carbon Composites for Improved Adhesion and Wear
Author: Narayan, Roger Jagdish
Advisors: Dr. Jerome J. Cuomo, Committee Chair
Abstract: A new approach is proposed for fabricating biomedical devices that last longer and are more biocompatible than those presently available. In this approach, a bulk material is chosen that has desirable mechanical properties (low modulus, high strength, high ductility and high fatigue strength). This material is coated with corrosion- resistant, wear-resistant, hard, and biocompatible hard carbon films. One of the many forms of carbon, tetrahedral amorphous carbon, consists mainly of sp3-bonded atoms. Tetrahedral amorphous carbon possesses properties close to diamond in terms of hardness, atomic smoothness, and inertness. Tetrahedral amorphous carbon and diamond films usually contain large amounts of compressive and sometimes tensile stresses; adhesive failure from these stresses has limited widespread use of these materials. This research involves processing, characterization and modeling of functionally gradient tetrahedral amorphous carbon and diamond composite films on metals (cobalt- chromium and titanium alloys) and polymers (polymethylmethacrylate and polyethylene) used in biomedical applications. Multilayer discontinuous thin films of titanium carbide, titanium nitride, aluminum nitride, and tungsten carbide have been developed to control stresses and graphitization in diamond films. A morphology of randomly interconnected micron sized diamond crystallites provides increased toughness and stress reduction. Internal stresses in tetrahedral amorphous carbon were reduced via incorporation of carbide forming elements (silicon and titanium) and noncarbide forming elements (copper, platinum, and silver). These materials were produced using a novel target design during pulsed laser deposition. These alloying atoms reduce hardness and sp3- bonded carbon content, but increase adhesion and wear resistance. Silver and platinum provide the films with antimicrobial properties, and silicon provides bioactivity and aids bone formation. Bilayer coatings were created that couple the adherence, biocompatibility, erosion resistance, and long term release of functional elements from hard carbon coatings with bioactive properties of nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite and short term drug release properties of resorbable poly (D,L) lactide-based materials. Finally, these hard carbon coatings have a variety of non-medical applications, including use in microelectronics packaging, sensors, flat panel displays, photodiodes, cutting tools, optical switches, and wear-resistant magnetic disks.
Date: 2003-08-06
Degree: PhD
Discipline: Materials Science and Engineering

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