Development of Lithium Disilicate Microstructure Graded Glass-Ceramic
Lindsay, Marianne Rose
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The goal of this research was to create a microstructure graded glass-ceramic and investigate the resulting properties as a function of crystallization processing. The desired glass-ceramic was a lithium disilicate material that has a crystallization gradient across the sample, leading to functionally graded properties as a result of the microstructure gradient. Samples were prepared by melting and pouring glass at 1400Â°C, annealing at 400Â°C for 48 hours, and nucleating at 480Â°C for 2 hours. To ensure that crystallization would not occur homogeneously throughout the sample, a temperature gradient was imposed during crystallization. Samples were crystallized on a self-constructed resistance wire furnace that was open to air. Several crystallization processing parameters were tested, including high temperature for a short time and low temperature for a long time. Samples were ground and polished to 0.25 microns before characterization methods were performed. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) showed the microstructure transition across the sample cross section, with crystals present on the crystalline side and only nuclei present on the glassy side. Raman spectroscopy showed a transformation of the characteristic spectra across the sample cross section, with defined, high-intensity peaks on the crystalline side and broad, low-intensity peaks on the glassy side. Microhardness showed a slight transition in hardness values across the sample cross section, however the variability was too great to draw any conclusions. The characterization methods showed that the desired material was created and the resulting properties were a function of the crystallization processing parameters.
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