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Effects of Wear Motion on Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (HMWPE) Molecular Orientation



S Sambasivan, Daniel A. Fischer, M C. Shen, Stephen M. Hsu


In a human hip joint, the motion is complex and consists of flexion/extension, abduction, and adduction. Laboratory studies have shown that these motions increase wear significantly. The aim of this study is to measure the change in molecular orientation of an ultra high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) sample under different motions. Two motions were used: a unidirectional and a cross-shear motion. A soft x-ray absorption spectroscopy at a synchrotron beamline was used to characterize the molecular orientation of the UHMWPE surface layer(1). The amount of soft-x-ray adsorption is very sensitive to the average molecular chain angle with respect to the electric field vector (E) of the incident x-ray beam.
Society for Biomaterials


biomaterials, UHMWPE, ultra high molecular weight polyethylene


Sambasivan, S. , Fischer, D. , Shen, M. and Hsu, S. (1999), Effects of Wear Motion on Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (HMWPE) Molecular Orientation, Society for Biomaterials (Accessed May 22, 2024)


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Created January 27, 1999, Updated October 12, 2021