Do the particle size, molecular weight, and processing of UHMWPE affect its thermomechanical and tribological performance?

H. S. Vadivel, M. Bek, U. Šebenik, L. Slemenik Perše, R. Kádár, N. Emami, M. Kalin

Journal of Materials Research and Technology 12 (2021) 1728-1737


UHMWPE has exhibited excellent performance when used as contact surfaces in tribological contacts. Traditionally, only UHMWPE grades, with narrow particle size and molecular weight distribution, have been deemed suitable for such applications. Now, various UHMWPE grades are available that are different from each other based on their particle size and molecular weight distribution. The question of whether the particle size of UHMWPE affects its performance and properties presents a research gap. The present study attempts to address this question. Additionally, the effect of processing of the UHMWPE is studied. It is observed that although minor differences were observed in the properties of the various grades of UHMWPE, they are inadequate to conclusively determine that the particle size and processing effect the properties and performance of the material.


Keywords: UHMWPE, Rheology, Viscoelasticity, Tribology

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