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What is zirconia
Zirconium Dioxide has the chemical formula ZrO2. It is zirconium’s main oxide. Normal conditions result in a white, tasteless and odorless crystal. It’s insoluble with water, hydrochloric or dilute sulfuric acid. Chemically, it is inactive. Its properties include high melting point and resistivity, as well as high refractive indices and low thermal expansion coefficient.
A gas is ionized significantly when heated to 3000degC and nearly completely by 5500degC. The electron flow can cause a gas to reach high temperatures when heated by resistance under an electric field. This highly dissociated and thermally conductive gas is known as plasma. Plasma cannot be produced by heating the gas. Instead, it is generally obtained through arc discharge. A plasma spray gun is the easiest plasma generator. In order to generate plasma, two electrodes are connected with a direct-current voltage. At the same time, an inert gas is passed (nitrogen, oxygen, argon or helium) between the electrodes. By using a high frequency current or short circuit, a stable DC-arc is created between the two electrodes. This causes the gas to absorb energy, forming a high-temperature flame. The zircon fine-powder sent into flames is instantly decomposed to ZrO2 in addition to SiO2, with SiO2 being evaporated, and ZrO2 separated.
The plasma-produced high-purity ZrO2 is a unique material. Plasma ZrO2 has spherical particle size, while mZrO2 crystals have a very fine grain. The practice has shown that ZrO2 crystalline materials formed at high temperatures are very active, and this is crucial for the production of high performance ceramic materials. Also, the plasma process is continuously being improved.
The ZrO2 high-purity produced can be adjusted to suit the customer’s needs. It has a maximum ZrO2 of 99.6% and a particle size above. The high-purity ZrO2 produced is white. If the ZrO2 level is low, then it will be pale yellow or yellowish brown. Stable zirconia tends to be pale yellow. All zirconia materials mentioned above are in monoclinic phases.
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