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A new type of composite metal–nanoparticle coating that significantly reduces the friction force of various surfaces, particularly archwires in orthodontic applications, is demonstrated. The coating is based on electrodeposited Ni film impregnated with inorganic fullerene-like nanospheres of tungsten disulphide. The first encouraging tests have shown reduction of up to 60% of the friction force between coated rectangular archwires and self-ligating brackets in comparison with uncoated archwires. The coating not only significantly reduces friction of commercial archwires but also maintains this low value of friction for the duration of the tests in comparison to archwires coated with nickel film without the nanoparticles. The coated surfaces of the wires were examined by scanning electron microscopy equipped with energy dispersive analyzer and by x-ray powder diffraction methods before and after the friction tests. Using these analyses, it was possible to qualitatively estimate the state of the Ni+IF-WS2 coating before and after the friction test compared to Ni coated wires without IF-WS2.
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