Platinum has been a primary metal of choice for CRM, EP and Neurostimulation applications for many years. But, as the price for this rare commodity rises, the search for equivalent lower-cost alternatives has increased. Some of these new Biomed™ Pt-substitution alloys have been found to offer equivalent or better performance. Palladium, for example, is available at about 70% lower cost than platinum. The table shown below compares properties of the Biomed™ alloys to show comparable features to Pt 10%Ir.
|Biomed Alloys vs Platinum|
Pd 10% Re
Pd 5% Re
|Max Impurities||1,500 ppm||5,000 ppm||5,000 ppm|
|Density||21.53 g/cm3||12.29 g/cm3||11.71 g/cm3|
|UTS as drawn||155 ksi||230 ksi||140 ksi|
|UTS annealed||55 ksi||80 ksi||50 ksi|
|Elongation as drawn||2% minimum||2% minimum||2% minimum|
|Elongation annealed||20% minimum||20% minimum||20% minimum|
|Electrical Resistivity||24 µohm.cm||32.5 µohm.cm||21.5 µohm.cm|
Ideal applications for Biomed alloys include high-metal content forms including guidewires, marker bands and micromachined parts.
All of the alloys are manufactured using the same basic process steps. First, the alloy is blended and induction melted in a vacuum chamber with an inert atmosphere. Next, the alloy is extruded to an intermediate size via high pressure and temperature processes. Next, the rod is fabricated to the final shape using rolling mills and carbide and diamond dies. Additionally, EDM micromachining processes are available for custom-designed parts with tolerances as low as 0.0002”. Palladium 10% Rhenium is one such alloy with proven success as an alternative to Platinum/Iridium for EP and AF catheter wire. Properties such as work hardening and tensile strength have shown equivalent performance, and comparable opacity in the wave length range of fluoroscopy. Also, the softer characteristics of palladium and accompanying higher ductility can be easier to manufacture to various forms. Interestingly, palladium has the highest magnetic susceptibility of Platinum-Group metals. However, when it is alloyed with group IV-VI transition metals, Rhenium in particular, that magnetic susceptibility is reduced. Lower magnetic susceptibility improves MRI comparability.
Introduction of the new BioMed™ Series of Platinum-substitution Alloys is just one example of our committment to developing a range of alloys to offer the lowest cost and highest performance for Medical Device Applications. Alloys with other Platinum-Group Metals (PGM) including Iridium, Rhenium and others can provide equal or better characteristics at a lower cost that Platinum for many applications.
|Biomed Alloy Features|
|Biomed™ 500||5%Pd/Re||imporved as-cast hardness and wear resistance|
|Biomed™ 1000||10%Pd/Re||general purpose medical device applications|
|Biomed™ 1400||14%Pd/Re||higher strength for medical applications|
|Biomed Alloy Forms|
|Tubing||Refer to Tubing page|
|Wire||0.0015" (0.0381mm) or greater|
|Sheet||Thickness: 0.002s" (0.0508mm) or greater|
|Micromachined Parts||Tolerances +/- 0.005"|