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A study of a low copper dental amalgam by analytical transmission electron microscopy

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  31 January 2011

Tejpal Kaur Hooghan
Affiliation:
Materials Science Department, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas 76203–0308
Russell F. Pinizzotto
Affiliation:
Materials Science Department, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas 76203–0308
John H. Watkins
Affiliation:
Department of Biomaterials Science, Baylor College of Dentistry, Dallas, Texas 75246
Toru Okabe
Affiliation:
Department of Biomaterials Science, Baylor College of Dentistry, Dallas, Texas 75246
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Abstract

Analytical transmission electron microscopy was used to study specimens of a low-Cu dental amalgam (Velvalloy), prepared using the “wedge technique.” Analysis confirmed that the microstructure consists of a Ag2Hg31)/HgSn7−92) matrix surrounding unreacted Ag3Sn(γ) particles. In addition a hitherto uncharacterized reaction layer of fine grains between Ag3Sn(γ) and Ag2Hg31) is a mixture of Ag3Sn(γ), Ag–Hg–Sn (β1), Ag2Hg31), and occasionally Cu6Sn5 (η′). An Ag–Hg–Sn (β1) phase was clearly identified for the first time. Since Velvalloy is a simple commercial dental amalgam, it is a reasonable starting point for characterizing more complex dental amalgam microstructures.

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Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 1996

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