Background: Multi-directional sliding motions between total knee replacement materials is a suspected primary wear mechanism of ultra-high molecular weight poly(ethylene) (UHMWPE). Method of Approach: A wear testing machine was developed to quantify damage from crossing contact pathways on candidate biomaterials. A cyclic five-pointed star pattern was used to evaluate the tribological differences between linear and cross-motion surface tribology of stainless steel pins on flat UHMWPE. Results: Volumetric reconstruction of resultant damage showed that cross-shear volume loss was 2.94(± 0.88) times that of linear loss during testing. Conclusions: Basic multi-axis, cross-shear wear testing provides quantifiable measures of complex biomaterials wear phenomena.

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