Sanders, A. P., and R. M. Brannon. (2012). “ Scaled surrogate Hertzian bearing pairs for contact and wear testing.” Transactions of the Orthopaedic Research Society 2012 Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Feb. 4-7, Poster 2070. 2012 ORS poster 01 small
New implant bearing materials require extensive laboratory testing before clinical use, but the currently practiced contact and wear test methods impose limitations. Screening wear tests of prototype materials are typically done using simple bearing shapes (such as a ball-on-flat pair) and low loads. These tests are relatively simple and inexpensive, but they lack representative bearing shapes and contact stresses. Simulator wear tests on full-scale components overcome this shortcoming by implementing higher loads and complex, physiologic motion patterns. However, these tests are lengthy and expensive; so, they are reserved for final design testing. Surrogate test specimens that would mimic the contact mechanics of full-scale bearing pairs could improve the relevance of early screening tests. This research examines the hypothesis that a reduced-scale surrogate Hertzian contact pair can elicit a smaller scale, equal stress version of the contact response of a larger original contact pair. A chosen original contact pair mimics a knee implant femoral-tibial condylar interface, and a full-scale surrogate pair is found using recently published formulas. New formulas were derived to find a smaller version of the surrogate pair. The contact pairs were tested in quasi-static normal loading, and their contact patches were measured to evaluate the hypothesis.