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ArticleName Understanding the effect of sandblasting parameters on the surface morphology of titanium implants when combining sandblasting with turning
DOI 10.17580/tsm.2024.01.11
ArticleAuthor Pyatykh A. S., Savilov A. V., Chapyshev A. P.

Irkutsk National Research Technical University, Irkutsk, Russia

A. S. Pyatykh, Associate Professor at the Department of Technology and Equipment of Machine-Building Production, Candidate of Technical Sciences, e-mail:
A. V. Savilov, Associate Professor at the Department of Technology and Equipment of Machine-Building Production, Candidate of Technical Sciences, Associate Professor, e-mail:
A. P. Chapyshev, Associate Professor at the Department of Technology and Equipment of Machine-Building Production, Candidate of Technical Sciences, Associate Professor, e-mail:


Titanium alloy pedicle screws for spine osteosynthesis application must ensure minimum failures in a patient’s system, minimum post-surgery rejections and shorter rehabilitation times. All this could be achieved through a special surface topography of the screw threads, which should help intensify the growth of bone tissue around the screw. This paper gives an overview of the most popular techniques for forming the implant topography. Both advantages and disadvantages are demonstrated. One of the most affordable techniques for obtaining the required topographical properties, as well as for creating a favourable stress state in the surface layers of screws, includes blasting with solid particles (i.e. sandblasting). The paper describes the results of an experimental study that looked at the effect of sandblasting parameters on the surface morphology of titanium implants when the process combines sandblasting with turning. The threaded surface was pre-shaped by turning. The threading speed was taken as a varying parameter. White alumina (Al2O3) sand was used for sandblasting. The sample implant was not rotated around its axis in the sand jet in order to further analyze how the angle of the abrasive jet to the target surface could impact the topography. Optical profile meter was used to measure the topography of sandblasted specimens. Changes in the surface morphology were analyzed based on the changed microrelief, as well as some quantitative parameters indicating the resultant roughness depth and shape. The roughness depth was determined based on average roughness height along the traversed length, while the roughness shape – based on dimensionless parameters of roughness profile asymmetry and peakedness. It was found that the surface formed by turning is characterized by monoaxial regularity, i.e. the roughness lines go along the thread gaps. This can affect the implant survival rate. It was found that sandblasting helped achieve a good roughness orientation in all specimens. The authors documented the fact of the asymmetry and peakedness parameters being inherited when sandblasting is combined with turning if the target surface is at right angle to the nozzle axis. The obtained results can be used in actual production environment for manufacturing titanium implants for osteosynthsis.
This research was funded under Grant No. MK-2982.2022.4 by the President of the Russian Federation aimed at supporting young Russian researchers with PhD degrees: Enhanced Efficiency of the Process for Making Medical Implants out of Titanium Alloys.
This research was funded by the Russian Foundation for Innovation Support under Contract No. 3440GS1/57422 dated 18/02/2020 (Code 0057422), Application No. S1-69876, Competition Start-19-1 (Phase 4).

keywords Titanium alloy VT6, pedicle screw, implants, surface roughness, sandblasting

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