In the present work, the oxide layers developed at elevated temperature on three vanadium-free titanium alloys, of interest as implant biomaterials, were studied by Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy, elastic recoil detection analysis, and scanning electron microscopy. The chemical composition of the alloys investigated, in wt%, was Ti–7Nb–6Al, Ti–13Nb–13Zr, and Ti–15Zr–4Nb. Upon oxidation in air at 750 °C, an oxide scale forms, with a chemical composition, morphology, and thickness that depend on the alloy composition and the oxidation time. After equal exposure time, the Ti–7Nb–6Al alloy exhibited the thinnest oxide layer due to the formation of an Al2O3-rich layer. The oxide scale of the two TiNbZr alloys is mainly composed of Ti oxides, with small amounts of Nb and Zr dissolved. For both TiNbZr alloys, the role of the Nb-content on the mechanism of the oxide formation is discussed.
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The authors gratefully acknowledge Prof. G. Fommeyer from Max Planck Institut für Eisenforschung (Düsseldorf, Germany) for kindly supplying the Ti alloy specimens. This work has been supported by Project Nos. 07N-0050-1999 and 07N-0066-2002 of the Spanish “Programa de Tecnología de los Materiales de la Comunidad Autónoma de Madrid,” by the “Nanoselect” project of the Spanish Consolider-Ingenio 2007 program, by Project No. MAT2007-66719-C03-03 of the Spanish “Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia,” and by the Hungarian OTKA Grant No. T-046238. F.P. acknowledges the Spanish Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte for financial support through a Sabbatical Year Grant (No. SAB2000-0243).
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Gutiérrez, A., Pászti, F., Climent-Font, A. et al. Comparative study of the oxide scale thermally grown on titanium alloys by ion beam analysis techniques and scanning electron microscopy. Journal of Materials Research 23, 2245–2253 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1557/JMR.2008.0281