Pin on disk wear testing is a method of characterizing the coefficient of friction, frictional force and rate of wear between two materials. As a particularly versatile method for testing wear resistance, pin on disk can be configured in multiple scenarios depending on the goals of your project.

Pin on disk testing can simulate multiple wear modes, including unidirectional, bidirectional, omnidirectional and quasi-rotational wear. Our equipment allows us to test virtually any combination of materials to determine the effect of wear on a medical device. While we can accommodate a variety of projects, we commonly test to ASTM G99, ASTM G133 and ASTM F732.

Our Pin on Disk Testing Capabilities

After completing pin on disk testing, we typically conduct mass-loss evaluations and differential analysis of test fluids to characterize wear properties. In addition, a contact profilometer can be utilized to evaluate the changes in surface topography due to articulation. Metallurgical evaluations of the post-test wear scarring can also be performed. In some cases, we can also introduce third body debris for accelerated wear evaluations.

For more information about our pin on disk testing capabilities, or to speak with an expert, contact us today.

pin on disk wear testing

Is Wear Testing Required?

Element's Engaged Experts provide insight into when regulatory bodies will require wear testing, and how to fulfill this requirement.

When do I need wear testing?

The FDA and other regulatory bodies will often request mechanical wear testing when the device being tested is introducing a new material couple, or a new material interaction hasn’t been adequately characterized through mechanical testing alone. Wear testing is also critical for comparing the wear properties of new devices to a previous generation device. 

Do I need a predicate?

If wear testing is a required part of your test program, we strongly recommend testing the implant side-by-side with a predicate device. Doing so ensures an “apples to apples” comparison of your submission with existing devices as small details can make an impact and comparing to literature is often difficult. Our wear testing frames are configured to allow easy side-by-side comparison testing for original samples and predicates, ensuring reliable – and repeatable – results.

pin on disk wear testing

High Capacity Pin on Disk Testing

Element's unique 12 station wear frames give us the ability to perform high capacity pin on disk testing.

Element performs pin-on-disk wear testing in accordance with ASTM G99, ASTM G133 and ASTM F732 on our in-house, 12-station wear test frames. These unique, high capacity machines allow for the testing of several material combinations at a time, on a single test frame. The 12-station setup also allows for additional statistical confidence by testing multiple samples per condition.

Element’s Pin-on-Disk Test Frame Capabilities:

  • 1,000 N normal load per station
  • 100+ MPa of contact stress
  • 2.5 N-m of torque
  • Up to 0.25 km per minute of unidirectional motion
  • 12 individual, temperature controlled test basins for in-vivo simulation
  • 4 temperature controlled load-soak basins for fluid gain/loss correction
pin on disk wear testing

Additional Pin on Disk Wear Testing

Element's Engaged Experts have the ability to provide a wide range of specialized testing and analysis for your next pin-on-disk wear testing.

Third Body Wear Analysis

Element can perform third body wear analysis as part of a pin-on-disk project. By introducing a third body particulate into the articulation of the test, an accurate simulation of a specific condition can be created (e.g., bone cement in the joint space).

Scratched-Surface Wear Analysis

This test may also be performed by introducing an engineered scratch network on the disk prior to pin-on-disk testing. This specific application is typically used to simulate the effects of complex, prolonged wear when evaluating a hard, metallic coating.

Post-Test Metallurgical Analysis

Upon the conclusion of testing, both pins and disks can be evaluated metallurgically using a stereoscope or high magnification scanning electron microscope (SEM). This allows you to better understand surface conditions and any scarring that may have occurred.

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Our deliverable is certainty - high quality data, test reports and certificates that you can absolutely rely on when making decisions about your materials and compliance. Engage with an expert today.


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