(15) How will wear be assessed in developing the coating technology?

In the development and optimization process of the SixNy coatings several screening tests will be performed to assess the quality of the coatings, including Rockwell indentation and scratch tests for adhesion, vertical scanning interferometry (VSI) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) tests for roughness, nanoindentation for hardness and profilometer tests for residual stresses in the coating. This will be performed at Linköping and Uppsala Universities. Coatings that are particularly promising will go on to ball-on-disk wear tests at Uppsala University (figure), and eventually hip simulator tests at the University of Leeds.
Illustration of a ball-on-disk test setup for a preliminary assessment of the wear of the coatings. A ball (different materials relevant to the application are used) slides against metallic substrates coated with silicon nitride in a serum solution, simulating the in vivo situation.

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