Elastic modulus and stress–strain response of human enamel by nano-indentation
Nano-indentation with a sharp (Berkovich) and two spherical indenters with nominal tip radii of 5 and 20 μm was used to determine the elastic modulus and stress–strain response of human enamel. Indentation tests were made over a wide range of peak loads from 1 to 450 mN in two orthogonal directions, i.e., parallel and perpendicular to enamel prisms. The elastic modulus and hardness (mean contact pressure) versus depth of penetration were determined for the three indenters. From the spherical indentation data, stress–strain curves (H−tan θ curve) of enamel were determined in the two orthogonal directions and were found to be different. The elastic modulus showed load dependence for both orientations of the enamel rod structure that depended on the indenter. However, these differences could be normalized upon considering the contact diameter. The indented sample was imaged with an SEM to investigate the near surface damage. In conclusion, prism-sheath structure played an important role in determining the mechanical properties as well as the localized fracture of enamel.
Journal: Biomaterials - Volume 27, Issue 24, August 2006, Pages 4388–4398