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Interface of Nanoparticle-Coated Electropolished Stents

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journal contribution
posted on 21.08.2012, 00:00 by Anne Neumeister, Daniel Bartke, Niko Bärsch, Tobias Weingärtner, Laure Guetaz, Alexandre Montani, Giuseppe Compagnini, Stephan Barcikowski
Nanostructures entail a high potential for improving implant surfaces, for instance, in stent applications. The electrophoretic deposition of laser-generated colloidal nanoparticles is an appropriate tool for creating large-area nanostructures on surfaces. Until now, the bonding and characteristics of the interface between deposited nanoparticles and the substrate surface has not been known. It is investigated using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Auger electron spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy to characterize an electropolished NiTi stent surface coated by laser-generated Au and Ti nanoparticles. The deposition of elemental Au and Ti nanoparticles is observed on the total 3D surface. Ti-coated samples are composed of Ti oxide and Ti carbide because of nanoparticle fabrication and the coating process carried out in 2-propanol. The interface between nanoparticles and the electropolished surface consists of a smooth, monotone elemental depth profile. The interface depth is higher for the Ti nanoparticle coating than for the Au nanoparticle coating. This smooth depth gradient of Ti across the coating–substrate intersection and the thicker interface layer indicate the hard bonding of Ti-based nanoparticles on the surface. Accordingly, electron microscopy reveals nanoparticles adsorbed on the surface without any sorption-blocking intermediate layer. The physicomechanical stability of the bond may benefit from such smooth depth gradients and direct, ligand-free contact. This would potentially increase the coating stability during stent application.