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The Mechanical and Thermal Behaviors of Heat-Treated Ni-Rich NiTi Orthodontic Archwires

Authors: S. M. Seyyed Aghamiri, M. Nili Ahmadabadi, Sh. Raygan, I. Haririan, M. S. Ahmad Akhondi
Journal of Materials Engineering and Performance, Vol.18, No.5-6, 2009,Page:843-847

The near equiatomic nickel-titanium alloy is an outstanding intermetallic compound exhibiting distinctive properties associated with characteristic thermal and stress-induced martensitic transformations. The process of producing orthodontic wires has been modified to obtain the optimal shape memory behaviors. Phase transformation temperatures and load-deflection characteristics of this binary alloy are very significant variables in the performance of this alloy and can be manipulated by different thermomechanical treatments via inducing precipitation or dislocation networks in the matrix. In this study, one brand of commercial heat-activated nickel-titanium archwire (3 M Unitek) was selected and solution treated. Then, the wires annealed at 400 °C for 10, 30, and 60 min. Thermal transformation temperatures were determined using differential scanning calorimeter. It was showed that these temperatures increased with increasing the time of heat treatment and multistage transformation occurred as the result of inhomogeneities. In order to evaluate mechanical parameters of heat-treated archwires, they were placed on an arch-form fixture simulating maxillary dentition and load-deflection curves were obtained by three-point bending test at 37 °C. The results compared to as-received archwires and the best superelasticity was observed after 30 min aging.