Oxidized Zirconium

OXINIUM Material Hardness

Surface hardness is correlated with abrasion resistance as well as properties such as strength and stiffness. 3

Hardness of Material

The relative hardness of the OXINIUM material and cobalt chrome were measured using a "nano-hardness" technique. The OXINIUM femoral component was measured through each zone:

  • ceramic oxide surface
  • oxygen enriched metal
  • metal substrate

Cross-sectional profiles of the OXINIUM material indicate a hard ceramic surface with a gradual decrease in hardness with distance from the ceramic. This transition zone is an oxygen-enriched metal.

Nano-Hardness Study 3

  • The higher surface hardness of OXINIUM components, coupled with a strong bonding between the surface ceramic oxide and the metal substrate, help explain the superior abrasion resistance of this material as compared to cobalt chrome.


3. M. Long, L. Riester, and G. Hunter, “Nano-hardness measurements of oxidized Zr-2.5Nb and various orthopaedic materials”, Trans. Soc. Biomaterials, 21, 1998, p. 528.