Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Surface Texture Design to Generate Specific Sizes and Shapes of UHMWPE Wear Particles



H. W. Fang, Stephen M. Hsu, J V. Sengers


Osteolysis induced by UHMWPE wear particles has emerged as the critical failure mechanism of artifical joints. However, the detailed mechanism of osteolysis and bone resorption induced by wear particles leading to the loosening of the total joint replacement is still not clear. To investigate the effects of size and shape of particles on biological response, particles with controlled size and shape are needed. The paper describes a novel technique where controlled size and shape of UHMWPE wear particles can be generated through rubbing against a textured surface. The basic principles of surface texturing to generate different size and shape of wear particles through rubbing have been developed. The surface features are fabricated through conventional semiconductor microfabrication techniques. Various designs were attempted and the results suggested that micro-cutting mechanisms of a visco-elastic material are complex but can be controlled through three dimensional surface features. Specific length of UHMWPE particles can be generated by controlling the cutting-edge length of a surface wedge. The particle width can be controlled by the cutting-edge height, normal load, and the sliding speed. With appropriate surface-texture design, UHMWPE particles can be generated with desired sizes and shapes.
Journal of Materials Science and Engineering Technology
no. 10/11


density, microfabrication, patterns, pitch, shape, size, surface texturing, UHMWPE, wear particles


Fang, H. , Hsu, S. and Sengers, J. (2003), Surface Texture Design to Generate Specific Sizes and Shapes of UHMWPE Wear Particles, Journal of Materials Science and Engineering Technology (Accessed July 13, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created December 31, 2002, Updated October 12, 2021