Alumina particle air-abrasion and aging effects: Fatigue behavior of CAD/CAM resin composite crowns and flexural strength evaluations

J Mech Behav Biomed Mater. 2021 Sep;121:104592. doi: 10.1016/j.jmbbm.2021.104592. Epub 2021 May 19.


The aim of this study was to characterize the flexural strength and elastic modulus of CAD/CAM resin composite material and to evaluate the influence of different surface treatments and storage conditions on the fatigue behavior of bonded composite crowns. Bars (flexural strength, n= 30; elastic modulus, n= 5) (1.2 × 4 × 12 mm) were produced for three-point bending test and CAD/CAM milled crowns (n= 5) (thickness= 1 mm) adhesively cemented to an epoxy resin substrate for fatigue tests. Bars and crowns were randomly allocated into two "surface treatments": no surface treatment (CTRL) and air-abrasion with 110 μm Al2O3 particles (AlOx); while the crowns were also subdivided into "aging condition" (baseline - storage for 24 h to 7 days, and aging - storage for 150 days + 25,000 thermal cycles). The three-point bending test was performed according to ISO 6872 and the luted crowns were subjected to step-stress fatigue test (initial load of 200 N; step-size of 50 N; 10,000 cycles per step; 20 Hz). Complementary analysis by Stereomicroscopy and Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FE-SEM) were performed. The flexural strength and fatigue data were submitted to statistical tests (α= 0.05). The results showed that air-abrasion reduces the flexural strength and the characteristic strength of the resin composite, without modifying its elastic modulus or its structural reliability (Weibull Modulus). Air-abrasion did not influence the fatigue behavior of the cemented crowns. Notwithstanding, a decrease in the survival rate was observed after 445,000 cycles (2,400 N) when subjected to aging at both the CTRL or AlOx conditions. FE-SEM micrographs of the crowns showed that alumina particle air-abrasion treatment can modify the topography of its treated inner surface. Therefore, air-abrasion with alumina powder introduces defects onto the surface of the CAD/CAM resin composite material, decreasing the flexural strength, but without changing its elastic modulus and reliability. Adhesive cementation onto an epoxy resin substrate prevented an influence of the introduced defects on the fatigue performance of the resin composite restoration. Nevertheless, the fatigue behavior may be damaged by aging regimen.

Keywords: Dental composite; Materials properties; Mechanical phenomena; Survival probability; Weibull analysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aluminum Oxide*
  • Ceramics
  • Composite Resins
  • Computer-Aided Design
  • Dental Stress Analysis
  • Flexural Strength*
  • Materials Testing
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Resin Cements
  • Surface Properties


  • Composite Resins
  • Resin Cements
  • Aluminum Oxide