May 20, 2015
Technology for Forming Normal Temperature Diamond-like Carbon Films on Dentures
STRAWB has developed a DLC coating system, for forming films of diamond-like carbon on dentures. This system produces a plasma in a vacuum chamber, and introduces a source gas that includes carbon and hydrogen as methane, from which the carbon becomes separated. This technology results in the physical formation of a carbon film on the denture material at room temperature.
"Everyone wants to maintain healthy teeth for as long as possible, so people consider the options of dentures or implants. In the case of implants, the difficulty is that a surgical procedure has to be done by a dentist. By contrast, dentures can be easily utilized by anyone."
However, the problem with dentures is that plaque builds up on them, causing odors. But STRAWB has done a one-year clinical trial, confirming that this vacuum deposition technology makes it difficult for dentures to get soiled, and that even if they do, they can be cleaned easily with water. Conventional coatings only last about three months, but a DLC film can prevent soiling for a year. DLC is already used in surgical instruments like scalpels and stents, so DLC-coated dentures are also safe to use.
"Unlike ordinary DLC, ours is unusually sp3-rich; that means, its content of the sp3 diamond crystal phase is over 90%. The film is about 70 nm thick. The thickness of such films depends on the coating time, but for dentures, it’s 70 nm. Our film is very flexible; it’s rated at 1-2 GPa. This film is silky smooth, but it’s extremely robust."
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