Effects of liquid environments on zirconia-toughened alumina
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The structural changes which occur in zirconia-toughened alumina when aged in a range of liquid environments (distilled water, ethylene glycol solution and HCl at room temperature, and ethylene glycol solution at 80 °C) is described. The changes were monitored by X-ray diffraction, surface analysis, analysis of the ageing solutions and microstructural observations. It was found that HCl induced significant proportions of the zirconia particles in the zirconia-toughened alumina to transform from the tetragonal to the monoclinic crystal structure. This transformation was accompanied by microcracking which eventually led to macrocracking after long periods of ageing. The transformation is a consequence of the leaching of the yttrium from the zirconia particles, thereby reducing their stability.
KeywordsPolymer Alumina Ethylene Zirconia Crystal Structure
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