Permanent black marking of medical-grade steel alloys - SISMA

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Permanent black marking of medicalgrade steel alloys by means of ultrashort laser pulses

Among the alreadyengineered techniques that can be exploited to reproduce permanent marks on metallic medical devices, ultrafast direct laser writing (UDLW), thanks to its negligible environmental impact and straightforward industrial scalability, is bound
to rapidly dominate the labeling scene.

The peculiar dynamics of ultrashort lasermatter interactions, minimizing the detrimental thermal buildup inherently involved in the atomic excitation, may specifically trigger (depending upon the fluence regime) the development of nanoscale surface textures (whose chemical composition is only minorly affected) which act as lighttrapping structures, and are able to withstand the daily harsh processing (e.g. autoclaving) required by such equipment, without needing (typically) repassivating treatments.

Within this paper, UDLW benefits (compared to traditional DLW approaches e.g. nanosecond laser marking), on the medicalgrade steel alloys marking routine, are assessed by experimentally investigating corrosion resistance and longterm durability of the imprinted identifiers, under purposelysimulated hostile and clinical conditions.


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