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silicon ni is an excellent high temperature structural ceramic that is widely used in a wide range of applications. It is a very strong material with an exceptional hardness and is highly resistant to thermal shock, making it ideal for applications that require both strength and durability.
Crystallographic phases of Si3N4
There are three distinct crystallographic phases of silicon nitride: a-Si3N4, b-Si3N4 and g-Si3N4. The most common and chemically stable alpha (a-) phase can be synthesized under normal pressure conditions. The b-phase is synthesised under high pressures and temperatures and has a much higher hardness and toughness.
Microstructure of silicon nitrides
The microstructure of silicon nitride ceramics is strongly dependent on the densification mechanism. Typical densification methods include hot pressing with a variety of additives, high-pressure sintering, and gas pressure sintering. The densification process affects the size of the elongated grains and the extent of bridging of cracks in the structure, both of which can significantly alter the material’s properties.
Protein Adsorption and Bacterial Activity
One of the most important factors in bacterial adhesion is the surface protein adsorption. The presence of proteins, such as vitronectin and fibronectin, can influence bacterial growth through their interaction with the surface material or by stimulating the activation of specific receptors. The surface chemistry of biomaterials can be modified using a number of techniques, including off-stoichiometry and phase engineering.
A number of studies have been conducted to determine how these adsorption mechanisms can be engineered to reduce bacterial adhesion. For example, surface phases and off-stoichiometry can be controlled through the chemical composition of the material and its sintering process, and this has been shown to have a significant effect on the interaction with progenitor cells.