Influence of micro-EDM on the phase transformation behaviour of medical-grade nitinol
Einfluss von µ-Drahterodieren auf das Umwandlungsverhalten von medizinischem Nitinol
Most nitinol medical applications are hinged on its superelasticity and shape memory-two unique properties that are dependent on nitinol's phase transformation between a martensitic phase and an austenitic phase. Since these transformations are thermomechanical in nature, establishing the influence of thermal processing on nitinol's phase-transformation behaviour is vital as this can help in predicting changes and/or tuning its mechanical properties to fit specific applications. This study uses differential scanning calorimetry to investigate the influence of micro-electrical discharge machining (micro-EDM) on nitinol's phase-transformation behaviour. For conclusive analysis, a relatively a thermal Jet-ECM process is used as a reference for the as-received material, whereas Laser, a more commercially established medical-grade nitinol machining process, is used to provide comparative analytical aid. From the results, it can be clearly shown that high discharge energies in micro-EDM do indeed have the potential to significantly alter nitinol's transformation behaviour, including reducing thermal hysteresis and resulting in the occurrence of an unusual three-peak phenomenon in the endothermic reverse transformation on heating.