Michael Bryant and Anne Neville

For their paper entitled: "Fretting corrosion of CoCr alloy: Effect of load and displacement on the degradation mechanisms”, published in Proc IMechE Part H: Journal of Engineering in Medicine 2017, Vol. 231(2) 114 -126, nominated by Professor Anthony Unsworth (Editor in Chief Part H) and Professor Cathy Holt, Chair of the BioMedical Engineering Division.

The research conducted by Bryant and his team looked into the design of metallic implants used in the human body, and how these implants breakdown over time.

As increasingly complex devices become more commonplace in the bioengineering industry, material loss mechanisms, such as those researched by Bryant, become more important for understanding how these implants breakdown over time.

Bryant said the paper that won him this award was the first to investigate the interaction of mechanical and chemical degradation on these implants, and said he was delighted that his team’s work had been recognised and honoured by the IMechE.

“It’s a great feeling to be acknowledged by the IMechE for the work that we are doing,” he said. “This research presents an alternative analysis to the usual work done into materials under these types of conditions – it was the first paper to show the interaction between the mechanical and chemical degradation processes by changing certain parameters of the system.”

“Engineers need to question everything. My advice to any young engineer would be: if there are still questions to be asked, ask them. We know that there are still questions to be asked with the work we are doing, and we will continue to do that.

“We are really interested in understanding and modelling these processes better and improving our knowledge and how to predict how these materials are affected by these mechanical and chemical degradation processes.”

Find out more about the Thomas Hawksley Gold Medal Award.

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