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Objective: The objective of this study was to investigate effect of resin infusion on fracture toughness of dental veneering ceramic (IPS e.max Ceram®).
Materials and methods: Ten bars, size 2 x 4 x 24 mm of veneering ceramic as a control were prepared following the manufacturer’s recommendation. The other ten experimental bars of resin-infused veneering ceramic were prepared by initially mixing the ceramic powder with polymeric fiber (0.1 % by mass), pressed into the mold and then firing according to the firing schedule without vacuum. After firing, a mixture of urethane resin was infused into the specimens under vacuum at 1x10-2 Torr for 6 hours and cured by dry heat at 100°C for 6 hours. Vickers hardness tester was used to create pre-crack indentation on the specimen. Four-point bending test was performed using a universal testing machine with a crosshead speed of 0.5 mm/min until fracture. Fracture surfaces of all specimens were examined under optical light microscope. Critical flaw sizes were measured using the fractographic analysis approach. Fracture toughness (KIc) was calculated. Independent sample t-test was used to determine significant difference of the mean KIc between control group and experimental resin-infused ceramic group at α = 0.05.
Results: The mean KIc of resin-infused ceramic (0.75 ± 0.06 MPa•m1/2) was statistically greater than that of control group (0.69 ± 0.07 MPa•m1/2), (p = 0.03).
Conclusion: Resin-infusion had significant influence on fracture toughness of veneering ceramic.
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