Author(s): Zhang Y, Kim JW
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Abstract OBJECTIVES: Clinical studies revealed several performance deficiencies with alumina- and zirconia-based all-ceramic restorations: fracture; poor aesthetic properties of ceramic cores (particularly zirconia cores); and difficulty in achieving a strong ceramic-resin-based cement bond. We aim to address these issues by developing a functionally graded glass/zirconia/glass (G/Z/G) structure with improved damage resistance, aesthetics, and cementation properties. METHODS: Using a glass powder composition developed in our laboratory and a commercial fine zirconia powder, we have successfully fabricated functionally graded G/Z/G structures. The microstructures of G/Z/G were examined utilizing a scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The crystalline phases present in G/Z/G were identified by X-ray diffraction (XRD). Young's modulus and hardness of G/Z/G were derived from nanoindentations. Critical loads for cementation radial fracture in G/Z/G plates (20mmx20mm, 1.5 or 0.4mm thick) bonded to polycarbonate substrates were determined by loading with a spherical indenter. Parallel studies were conducted on homogeneous yttria-stabilized tetragonal zirconia polycrystal (Y-TZP) controls. RESULTS: The G/Z/G structure consists of an outer surface aesthetic glass layer, a graded glass-Y-TZP layer, and a dense Y-TZP interior. The Young's modulus and hardness increase from surface to interior following power-law relations. For G/Z/G plates of 1.5 and 0.4mm thick, critical loads for cementation radial fracture were 1990+/-107N (mean+/-S.D., n=6) and 227+/-20N (mean+/-S.D., n=6), respectively, which were approximately 30 and 50\% higher than those for their monolithic Y-TZP counterparts (1388+/-90N for 1.5mm and 113+/-10N for 0.4mm thick; mean+/-S.D., n=6 for each thickness). A 1-sample t-test revealed significant difference (p<0.001) in critical loads for radial fracture of G/Z/G and homogeneous Y-TZP for both specimen thicknesses. SIGNIFICANCE: Our results indicate that functionally graded G/Z/G structures exhibit improved damage resistance, aesthetics, and potentially cementation properties compared to homogeneous Y-TZP.
This article was published in Dent Mater
and referenced in Journal of Powder Metallurgy & Mining