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Advances in Tribology
Volume 2009 (2009), Article ID 250986, 12 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2009/250986
Review Article

Significance of Tribocorrosion in Biomedical Applications: Overview and Current Status

1Section of Tribology, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL 60612, USA
2Department of Mechanical Engineering, NMAM Institute of Technology, Nitte 574 110, Karnataka, India
3Department of Materials Science and Engineering II, University of Duisburg-Essen, Lotharstr 1, 47057 Duisburg, Germany

Received 10 June 2009; Accepted 6 October 2009

Academic Editor: Braham Prakash

Copyright © 2009 M. T. Mathew et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Recently, “tribocorrosion,” a research area combining the science of tribology and corrosion, has drawn attention from scientists and engineers belonging to a wide spectrum of research domains. This is due to its practical impact on daily life and also the accompanying economical burdens. It encompasses numerous applications including the offshore, space, and biomedical industry, for instance, in the case of artificial joints (Total Hip Replacement, THR) in orthopedic surgery, where implant metals are constantly exposed to tribological events (joint articulations) in the presence of corrosive solutions, that is, body fluids. Keeping the importance of this upcoming area of research in biomedical applications in mind, it was thought to consolidate the work in this area with some fundamental aspects so that a comprehensive picture of the current state of knowledge can be depicted. Complexity of tribocorrosion processes has been highlighted, as it is influenced by several parameters (mechanical and corrosion) and also due to the lack of an integrated/efficient test system. Finally a review of the recent work in the area of biotribocorrosion is provided, by focusing on orthopedic surgery and dentistry.