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Pulsed Laser Micromachining of Yttria-Stabilized Zirconia Dental Ceramic for Manufacturing

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We describe the machining of a zirconia ceramic with millisecond pulses at 1064 nm (Nd:YAG) and present techniques that allow this material to be processed effectively. We show experimentally that due to the thermal expansion rate and absorption of the material, laser machining processes such as drilling and milling can critically fail in the millisecond regime. Results are also presented indicating that the phase structure of the bulk material postmillisecond-processing remains largely unmodified. Furthermore, we show that the addition of a nanosecond system to the process confers not only flexibility but the capability of precision machining at 1064 nm.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: School of Engineering and Physical Sciences, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh EH14 4AS, Scotland

Publication date: 2008-03-01

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