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Tribology, Characterization, and Surface Roughness Study of a CAD/CAM-Fabricated Zirconia

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The aim of the study is to evaluate the tribological behavior of dental Zirconia as it undergoes surface and subsurface damages during CAD/CAM milling. These damages cannot be healed in the subsequent fabrication processes leading to shortened lifetime of dental restorations. Four groups based on pre- and post-processing combinations are selected for the study. The groups included milling of pre-sintered blocks followed by sintering and polishing (Group A), polishing of pre-sintered block followed by sintering (Group B), sintering followed by sandblasting with aluminum oxide (Al2O3) and polishing (Group C), and polishing of pre-sintered blocks followed by sintering and sandblasting with aluminum oxide (Al2O3) (Group D). Each of the specimens is tested for wear using an antagonist Zirconia ball of 6 mm diameter and abraded for 7200 cycles at 2 Hz with 15 mm stroke length on a reciprocating tribometer. A load of 10 N was applied and the test is performed in the presence of artificial saliva. The surfaces are evaluated before and after wear using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), elemental-dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX), Micro-Vickers hardness test, and contact profilometer. Results show that Group C has the highest hardness value of 1487 ± 126.1 Hv and surface roughness of 1.319 ± 0.3 µm with coefficient of friction being 0.4. SEM analysis revealed that the wear observed on the surfaces of Group B and Group D was due to fatigue rather than abrasion. It was concluded from this study that friction and wear performances of Group A had no visible wear track with coefficient of friction being 0.38 and hardness value of 1408.5 ± 135.4 Hv. These results indicate that Group A and Group C are more favorable for clinical applications.

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Correspondence to D. Davidson Jebaseelan.

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Patil, A., Jebaseelan, D.D. Tribology, Characterization, and Surface Roughness Study of a CAD/CAM-Fabricated Zirconia. J Bio Tribo Corros 6, 32 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40735-020-0327-4

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  • Tribology
  • Zirconia
  • Sandblasting
  • Polishing
  • Surface roughness
  • SEM