Revealing crack profiles in polycrystalline tetragonal zirconia by ageing
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Exposure to hot water vapour is shown to be useful for staining indentation crack profiles in doped zirconia polycrystals. This is illustrated here in 3Y-TZP with two different grain sizes, for which Vickers indentation cracks are of Palmqvist type, as well as in 3Y-TZP with 2.5 wt.% cerium oxide, for which indentation cracks are half-penny. The crack profile is clearly revealed on the fracture surface after biaxial flexural testing in all the specimens previously exposed to hot water vapour. The contrast in 3Y-TZP is induced by t–m transformation caused by hydrothermal degradation, which induces an intergranular fracture zone in front of the initial position of the indentation crack tip. The biaxial strength and apparent fracture toughness of 3Y-TZP increase substantially with the time of exposure at a rate that depends on the grain size. On the contrary, in 3Y-TZP doped with ceria no signal of t–m transformation is found and the flexure biaxial stress remains practically constant, but the initial position of the indentation crack is also clearly revealed by an intergranular fracture zone in front of the initial position of the crack tip. In this case, this is associated to environmentally assisted slow crack growth under the indentation residual stress during exposure to hot water vapour in autoclave.
CitationMarro, F.G.; Camposilvan, E.; Anglada, M. Revealing crack profiles in polycrystalline tetragonal zirconia by ageing. "Journal of the european ceramic society", Juliol 2012, vol. 32, núm. 8, p. 1541-1549.