Magnesium Powder Injection Moulding (MIM) of Orthopedic Implants for Biomedical Applications


Metal injection molding (MIM) has a high potential for the economic near-net-shape mass production of small-sized and complex-shaped parts. The motivation for launching Mg into the MIM processing chain for manufacturing biodegradable medical implants is related to its compatibility with human bone and its degradation in a non-toxic matter. It has been recognized that the load-bearing capacity of MIM Mg parts is superior to that of biodegradable polymeric components. However, the choice of appropriate polymeric binder components and alloying elements enabling defect-free injection molding and sintering is a major challenge for the use of MIM Mg parts. This study considered the full processing chain for MIM of Mg–Ca alloys to achieve ultimate tensile strength of up to 141 MPa with tensile yield strength of 73 MPa, elongation at fracture Af of 7% and a Young’s modulus of 38 GPa. To achieve these mechanical properties, a thermal debinding study was performed to determine optimal furnace and atmosphere conditions, sintering temperature, heating rates, sintering time and pressure.
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