Microstructure, mechanical properties, and bone cell interactions of ZTA composites reinforced with BN

Gokce Ata Buyuker, Yigithan Tufan, Gizem Ozge Kayan, Batur Ercan, Ipek Akin*, Gultekin Goller

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Due to their remarkable mechanical properties and biocompatibility, zirconia toughened alumina (ZTA) based composites are preferred materials for dental and orthopedic uses. This study focuses on the production and characterization of hexagonal boron nitride (BN) containing ZTA ceramics. To achieve this, we formulated composite systems with a composition of 70Al2O3-(30-x)YSZ-(x)BN (in vol%, where x ranges from 1 to 5). These mixtures were densified via spark plasma sintering (SPS) at a temperature of 1350 °C under a pressure of 40 MPa, with a dwell time of 5 min. The densification, resulting microstructure, and mechanical properties, including Vickers hardness and indentation fracture toughness, were thoroughly examined. All ZTA-BN composites achieved sintering densities exceeding 98.5% of their theoretical values. Incorporating BNs into ZTA composites increased fracture toughness by ∼55% while maintaining Vickers hardness values. Notably, crack deflection mechanism played a dominant role in toughening, particularly for the composite containing 3 vol% BNs. Furthermore, in vitro biocompatibility assessment of the YZTAB3 sample demonstrated that the composite had no cytotoxic effects towards human bone cells, indicating its potential for biomedical applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16956-16964
Number of pages9
JournalCeramics International
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2024

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© 2024 Elsevier Ltd and Techna Group S.r.l.


  • Bone cells
  • Boron nitride
  • In vitro tests
  • Spark plasma sintering
  • Zirconia toughened alumina


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