Nitinol Processing

Nitinol (NiTi), is a unique, specialty material used in complex implants and delivery systems for structural heart, peripheral vascular, and non-vascular devices.

Laser cut nitinol hypotube stent for medical devices

Heraeus is recognized worldwide for its metals expertise and the engineering innovation to handle the most complex technical challenges for our customers. Leverage our NiTi design and processing expertise including laser cutting, shape setting or heat treating, and electropolishing. This mastery of materials, combined with our design and development capabilities and end-to-end vertical integration, will help bring your interventional device to market faster.

Nitinol Laser Cutting

Whether your design is an intricate and fragile part with a tight tolerance or a tube with a few features and wide tolerances, we can make cost-effective parts to your specifications in prototype and production quantities. In addition to laser cutting of tubular materials (both on-axis and off-axis), we also offer laser cutting of small parts from flat materials up to roughly .050” thickness.

Material Sizes for Laser Cutting

  • Material (Wall) Thickness = .002” - .050”
  • Tubing Diameter = .008” - .700” O.D.
  • Tubing Length: We can accommodate most tubing lengths from 1 inch to 10 feet.
  • Flat Cutting: small parts only, up to roughly 1” maximum dimension.

Cut Width (Laser Kerf Width)

  • Thin Wall Materials (.002” - .005”) Kerf = .0005” - .001”
  • Regular Wall (.006” - .009”) Kerf = .001” - .002”
  • Thick Wall (.010” & larger) Kerf = .0015” - .004”

Calculating Part Yield from Raw Material

  • Part Yield Per Tube Length = (Supplied Tubing Length - 6”) / (Part Length + .015”) (for tubes longer than 6”)
  • Tubes smaller than 6” would be manually loaded on a fixture

Nitinol Shape Setting / Heat Treating

Shape Setting is the process of heat-forming a Nitinol device from its original fabricated form into its final “memory” shape.

At Heraeus, we have various proven shape setting processes for different applications. Leverage our expertise when it comes to deforming and heat treating nitinol from its original fabricated form whether that be drawn tubing, wire, laser cut tubing, or flat material into its new "memory" shape. The nitinol heat treating methods we use depend on your unique specifications. From design to manufacturing to delivery, Heraeus engineers will collaborate with you to ensure your nitinol device meets your specific application requirements.

Nitinol Shape Setting Capabilities

  • Large expansion ratios are possible
  • Shapes can range from simple radial expansion to complex geometries
  • In-house fixture design and fabrication
  • Shape-setting equipment: Fluidized bath
  • Active Af Testing: bend, crush, and recovery testing of Nitinol

Nitinol Electropolishing

Electropolishing is a critical final surface finishing step for many permanent implantable medical devices such as stents and filters.

Let our experienced engineers work with you to determine your specific electropolishing needs from minimal material removal to highly polished surfaces depending on the geometric configuration and function of the nitinol device.

Tolerance

  • Exceptional repeatability and predictability
Electropolishing Benefits

  • Removes slag, machining artifacts, and heat affected zones (HAZ) that result from thermo-cutting processes (e.g., laser, and EDM machining)
  • Eliminates surface irregularities
  • Rounds off any sharp edges
  • Improves performance characteristics of Nitinol parts
  • Dramatically enhances corrosion resistance
  • Improves surface reflectivity and brightness
  • Removes metallic and non-metallic inclusions introduced by manufacturing

Peripheral Vascular

  • Stents
  • Delivery Systems

Cardiovascular

  • Stents
  • Delivery Systems

Structural Heart

  • Left Atrial Appendage Frames
  • Heart Valve Frames
  • Delivery Systems

Interventional Cardiology

  • Stents
  • Delivery Systems

Electrophysiology

  • Sensing Tips
  • Ablation Tips

Neurovascular

  • Stents
  • Flow Diversion
  • Delivery Systems

Ophthalmic

  • Stents