Two Surface Treatment Technologies for Zirconium Materials

The surface of the zirconium rod and zirconium alloy must be clean and smooth before joining, heat treatment, electroplating and forming. This article introduces 2 types of surface treatment methods for zirconium materials.

  1. Surface decontamination

Grease, oil, and lubricants produced during zirconium machining or other processing can be removed in a number of ways. Commonly used cleaning methods are

1) cleaning with alkaline or milky detergent in a soaking tank;

2) cleaning with ultrasonic vibration;

3) rinsing with acetone or trichloroethylene or steam degreasing and

4) cleaning with other cleaning agents.

Small stains can also be removed by hand wiping with some solvents such as acetone, alcohol, trichloroethylene, or a trichloroethylene substitute. In the electrolyte system, if the voltage and current can be controlled to avoid anodic polarization or spark discharge and pitting, positive or negative polarity decontamination can be used. Before heat treatment and bonding, the surface of the zirconium material must be cleaned to prevent metal contamination and the resulting deterioration of ductility.

Surface Treatment Technologies for Zirconium Materials

  1. Blast cleaning

Mechanical decontamination methods such as sandblasting, shot blasting, and evaporative cleaning can remove dirt and lubricants from zirconium and hafnium surfaces. Alumina, silicon carbide, silica and steel grit are ideal media for mechanical decontamination. The decontamination medium used should be replaced regularly to avoid increased workload due to particle passivation.

Grinding or shot peening may cause residual compressive stress and thermal deformation on the surface of the material, especially the surface of the sheet. Hot deformation may also occur during subsequent rolling and profile machining.

Blast cleaning is not a substitute for pickling. Blast cleaning cannot remove surfaces contaminated with interstitial elements such as carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen. In general, blast cleaning followed by pickling can ensure the complete removal of surface contamination and cold-worked layers, resulting in a smooth, shiny metal surface.

For more information, please visit

What Are the New Sintering Methods of Zirconia Ceramics?

With the continuous development of science, sintering methods of zirconia ceramics are continuously introduced.

Electric field sintering

Electric field sintering refers to the sintering of the ceramic body under the action of a DC electric field. Some high-curie-point ferroelectric ceramics, such as lithium niobate ceramics, apply a DC field to both ends of the green body at their sintering temperature. After cooling to a temperature below the Curie point (Te-1210 ℃) and removing the electric field, you can obtain Piezoelectric ceramic samples.

Sintering process


Ultrahigh pressure sintering

Ultra-high pressure sintering is sintering at a pressure of several hundred thousand atmospheres or more. Its characteristics are that it cannot only make the material reach high density quickly, and have fine grains (less than 1um), but also change the crystal structure and even the atomic and electronic states, so that the material cannot be reached under the usual sintering or hot-pressing sintering process Performance, and can synthesize new artificial minerals. This process is relatively complicated and requires higher mold materials, vacuum sealing technology, and fineness and purity of raw materials.

Activated sintering

The principle of activated sintering is to use some physical or chemical methods to make the atoms or molecules of the reactants in a high-energy state before or during sintering. With the instability of this high-energy state, it is easy to release energy Low energy state. The physical methods used in activated sintering include electric field sintering, magnetic field sintering, sintering under the action of ultrasound or radiation, and so on; the chemical methods used are: chemical reactions based on redox reactions, dissociation of oxides, halides, and hydroxides, and atmospheric sintering. Activated sintering has the advantages of reducing the sintering temperature, shortening the sintering time, and improving the sintering effect.

For some ceramic materials, activated sintering is another effective texturing technique. There is also the use of substances in the phase change, dehydration and other decomposition processes, the atom or ion bond is destroyed, making it in an unstable active state. For example, increase the specific surface area; add substances that can generate new erbium molecules during the sintering process; add substances that can promote the sintering material to form a solid solution; increase the lattice defect substances, all of which are activated sintering. In addition, activated sintering also includes adding a small number of substances that can form an active liquid phase, promote the vitrification of materials, appropriately reduce the viscosity of the liquid phase, wet the solid phase, and promote solid-phase dissolution and recrystallization.

Activated hot sintering

Activated hot-pressing sintering is a new process developed on the basis of activated sintering. It utilizes an activated state with higher energy during the decomposition reaction or phase change of the reactants to perform hot-pressing treatment, which can be performed at lower temperature and lower pressure. It is a high-efficiency hot pressing technology to obtain high-density ceramic materials in a short time. For example, barium titanate, lead zirconium titanate, ferrite, and other electronic ceramics are made by hot pressing by the decomposition reaction of hydroxide and oxide; high-density beryllium oxide, thorium oxide and uranium oxide ceramics were prepared by hot pressing of carbonate decomposition reaction; high-density alumina ceramics are made by hot pressing during phase transition of some materials.

Stanford Advanced Materials (SAM) is a global supplier of pure metals, alloys, ceramics, minerals, and rare earth materials since 1994. Headquartered in Lake Forest, California, SAM specializes in providing high-purity chemicals (up to 99.99999%) for research institutes and technical grade materials for advanced industries, such as pharmaceutical, capacitor, metallurgy, semiconductor, and aviation. Please visit for more information.

Advantages of Zirconia Ceramic Rods

Zirconium oxide ceramic rods have the common advantages of both metal and polymer materials, and they play a very important role because of their numerous advantages and applications. The production process of ceramic rods is cumbersome and requires production processes such as cutting, grinding, and polishing. Despite this, ceramic rods are in high demand compared to other materials of the same type, which has a tendency to go higher because of its advantages.


Excellent Weatherability

Ceramic rods using zirconia or alumina as production materials have obvious advantages over products of the same category. They are highly weather-resistant and have no effect on the surface and substrate of the ceramic rod, whether it is sunlight, rain or moisture. Corrosion-resistant ceramic rods are also very stable in color under ultraviolet light and are in good compliance with international standards in terms of impact resistance, strength, and elasticity.

Strong Stability

Ceramic rods are generally made of zirconia, which is currently a leading technology in the industry. First of all, a zirconia ceramic rod is simpler to clean, with good fire resistance, neither melting nor falling or exploding, and it can remain stable for a long time. Secondly, the ceramic rod is easy to maintain, no need to add any anti-corrosion paint or protective layer on the surface, it is easy to use and has a long service life.

High Readability

The ceramic rods are made of high-precision materials, which enhance the mechanical strength and hardness of the ceramics during high-temperature firing. Therefore, the ceramic rod has a good performance in terms of impact resistance. After a long period of proof and a number of tests, the wear resistance is also strong, and the shape is not damaged in the long-term use. In a variety of harsh working environments, the advantages of ceramic rods are even more pronounced, making acid-resistant ceramic rods the best choice for harsh conditions.

Ceramic rods are widely used in various fields due to their weather resistance, stability, and high wear resistance. In addition to being able to be used in normal environments, the use of ceramic rods not only ensures the normal operation of the instrument, but also does not cause breakage, wear, corrosion, etc., nor damage to the instrument.

Stanford Advanced Materials (SAM) is a global supplier of pure metals, alloys, ceramics, minerals, and rare earth materials since 1994. We supply high-quality zirconia ceramic materials used in aerospace components, medical devices, surgical and dental implants, etc. Please visit for more information.

How is the Zirconia Industry Laid Out?

Globally, zirconia producers are mainly concentrated in a few countries, mainly including China, Japan, France, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Australia. Companies with a comprehensive zirconia industrial layout include Saint-Gobain, Japan’s Tosoh, Japan’s First Element, Showa Denko, France’s Suvi, and Japan’s Sumitomo Osaka Cement. Among them, the main business of First Element is zirconium-based, and most of the other companies are large-scale integrated enterprises.

With zirconia as the main component, after adding rare earth elements (mainly cerium oxide) and other oxides, composite zirconia powders with different performance characteristics can be formed. The nature of the composite zirconia depends on the type of material or crystal structure with which it is combined. Depending on the specific needs of the application, different formulations of composite zirconia materials with different properties can be prepared using different formulations.

zirconia ball

In general, zirconia ceramics are divided into three categories: PSZ partially stabilized zirconia, also known as ceramic steel (with superior impact resistance); TZP tetragonal polycrystalline zirconia (better mechanical strength and fracture toughness); FSZ fully stabilized zirconia, crystalline phase cubic phase, with high-temperature conductivity, but high thermal expansion coefficient and poor thermal shock resistance.


Since zirconia is the only metal oxide that has both acidic and basic and oxidizing and reducing properties and is also a p-type semiconductor, it is easy to generate oxygen vacancies. As a catalyst carrier, it can interact with the active component, so its supported catalyst has more excellent properties than other materials-supported catalysts.

Precise ceramic parts

Zirconia ceramics can have excellent mechanical properties and fracture toughness, chemical resistance, and biocompatibility, so you can see the back of zirconia ceramic materials in industry and life.

Battery material

Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) are a new type of green energy that developed rapidly in the 1980s. Due to its high energy conversion efficiency (up to 65%) and the use of various fuels such as hydrogen, carbon monoxide, methane, etc., the system design is simple, and the pollution-free emission is low, which will be applied to the power generation system. The solid electrolyte is the core component of SOFC.

Zirconium oxide ceramics have become the most researched and widely used solid electrolyte materials because of their high ionic conductivity, good chemical stability, and structural stability.


Zirconium oxide is an excellent special oxide refractory material and used at a high temperature (2300 ℃ – 2400 ℃). It has good chemical stability and is not easy to decompose, and is highly corrosive and resistant to acid and alkali slag. The industry uses zirconia-based refractories to produce refractory materials with excellent thermal shock resistance, corrosion resistance and wears resistance, which can make refractories have better performance and longer service life. It has been applied to the manufacturing process of industrial continuous casting steel and alloy materials and has important significance for improving the quality and cost of metal materials such as steel.

Optical material

Zirconium dioxide ZrO2 is a high refractive index, low absorptive material that can be used in coatings in the near-ultraviolet (<300 nm) to infrared (~8 μm) spectral regions. Nano-zirconia is added to the special coating material to increase the refractive index of the coating without changing the light transmittance. In the field of optical materials, in addition to being used as a coating, nano zirconia can also be used as a polishing material for optical lenses.

Electronic materials

For engines that use three-way catalytic converters to reduce pollution emissions, oxygen sensors are essential in the automotive industry. It uses the ceramic sensitive component to measure the oxygen potential in the exhaust pipe of the automobile, and calculates the corresponding oxygen concentration by the principle of chemical balance, and achieves the measuring component that monitors and controls the combustion air-fuel ratio to ensure the product quality and the exhaust gas emission standard. There are two types of oxygen sensors currently in use: titanium oxide and zirconium oxide. The core component is a porous zirconia ceramic tube, which is a solid electrolyte with sintered porous platinum (Pt) electrodes on both sides.

Plumbum zirconate titanate (PbZrxTi1-xO3, PZT) ceramics are a commercially important class of piezoelectric materials. Compared with other piezoelectric ceramics, PZT ceramics not only have high Curie temperature and piezoelectric coefficient, but also are easy to be doped and modified, and have good stability, so they have an important position in the electronic machinery manufacturing industry. They are the basic material for the preparation of most electromechanical devices such as sonar, hydrophone, ultrasonic generator, volt generator, and position trimmer.

Brake material

Ceramic materials have high heat resistance, thermal stability, and hardness. As an important member of advanced ceramics, zirconia ceramics certainly have similar characteristics. In view of the excellent quality of advanced ceramics, researchers have introduced it into friction materials to obtain longer-lasting and more durable friction materials under the most extreme working conditions. Today, more and more composite formulations for brake pads and clutch linings contain ceramic materials.

Many ceramic materials can be added to the brake material, including the zirconia ceramics we introduce today, in addition to silicon carbide, alumina, silica, and magnesia

Thermal spray material

Using thermal spraying technology, the ceramic coating is deposited on the metal collective, and the characteristics of high-temperature resistance, heat insulation, wear resistance, corrosion resistance and insulation of the ceramic are combined with the toughness, workability, the electrical and thermal conductivity of the metal material. The ideal composite coating product has become an important development direction in the field of composite materials and product development.

Aviation surface protection technology is a hotspot of thermal spraying for many years. The key components of aero-engines are high-temperature alloy turbine blades and turbine disks. The current engine turbine inlet temperature is close to or exceeds the melting point of the alloy, and such high temperatures will affect the function of the engine and dye. Therefore, an important development trend of superalloys is to coat the surface of the alloy with a high-melting ceramic coating (Thermal Barrier Coatings – TBCS) with good thermal insulation properties. At present, the most widely used TBCS is yttria-stabilized zirconia materials.

Stanford Advanced Materials supplies high-quality zirconium products to meet our customers’ R&D and production needs. Please visit for more information.

Zirconia Ceramic Phone Backplane Stands Out in 5G Era

By the end of 2018, 154 mobile operators around the world are carrying out 5G technology tests or trials, and the number of countries participating in 5G has been expanded to 66. With the advent of 5G era, the mobile phone industry will usher in a new round of reform, and the mobile phone backboard market is facing a reshuffle.

Zirconia ceramic phone backplane stands out

5G era requires faster signal transmission, 1 to 100 times faster than 4G. 5G communications will use a spectrum of more than 3Ghz, with shorter millimeter-wave wavelengths. Compared with the metal backplane, ceramic backplane has no interference to signal and has incomparable superior performance of other materials, which is favored by mobile phone manufacturers.

The contrast of the backplane of several kinds of mobile phones

Among all-ceramic materials, zirconia ceramic has the advantages of high strength, high hardness, acid and alkali resistance, corrosion resistance and high chemical stability, as well as the characteristics of scratch and wear resistance, no signal shielding, excellent heat dissipation performance, and good appearance. Therefore, it becomes a new mobile phone body material after plastic, metal, and glass. The application of zirconia ceramic in the mobile phone is mainly two parts: backplane and fingerprint identification cover.

Zirconia Ceramic Phone Backplane Stands Out in 5G Era

Preparation and difficulty analysis of zirconia cell phone ceramics

The preparation of zirconia ceramic backplane mainly includes the preparation, molding, sintering, grinding and polishing process of zirconia ceramic powder, in which the preparation of zirconia ceramic powder is the most important and most difficult part of the whole process.

Technological difficulties

The phone backplane powder of zirconia ceramic is nanocomposite zirconia. In the preparation of ceramics, the quality requirements include that the particle size distribution is normal, the particle shape is close to circular, the dispersion is good, and the purity is high. The preparation methods of nano-composite zirconia powders include the hydrothermal method, precipitation method, alcohol-brine hydrolysis method, and low-temperature gas-phase hydrolysis method.

The quality of powder directly affects the intrinsic quality and performance of finished products. High purity, ultra-fine particle size, narrow particle size distribution, and good dispersibility are important bases for evaluating the quality of ceramic powders. The powder agglomeration and surface modification of nano-composite zirconia have become two major problems. With the development of technology, researchers have found corresponding solutions.

Firstly, the agglomeration of zirconia powder is a big problem. Gan Xuexian et al. investigated the final depolymerization effect by designing and using different grinding equipment and process parameters. With d50=1.355μm zirconia powder as the research object, when using vertical ball mill, vertical ball mill and horizontal sand mill as the grinding equipment, serving with φ2mm zirconia ball as the grinding medium, with m medium: m material = 5:1 medium material ratio grinding for 15h, detection zirconia slurry size after grinding, the results show that: the horizontal sanding machine has the best grinding effect, and the d50 of zirconia slurry is 0.303μm. When the horizontal sand mill is adopted as the grinding equipment, the grinding effect is best under the conditions that the ratio of medium material (m medium: m material) is 4:1, the solid content of slurry (w) is 45%, the linear speed is 10m•s-1, and the grinding time is 25h.

Secondly, in terms of surface modification of zirconia powder, Yue Liang et al. drew the following conclusions through experiments: the sintering activity of zirconia powder was significantly improved after horizontal stirring grinding and manual granulation, and the sintering density was close to 99.5% at 1400℃; after grinding zirconia powder, the bending strength of sintered samples was lower than that of the original powder mainly because of the large size defect. Therefore, it is necessary to have appropriate granulation technology to improve the powder forming performance; it is suggested that improving the stability of phase transition is beneficial to obtaining high-performance zirconia powders.

Stanford Advanced Materials supplies high-quality zirconia products to meet our customers’ R&D and production needs. Please visit for more information.

Application of Zirconia Electrolyte in Oxygen Sensor

With the gradual improvement of people’s awareness of environmental protection and energy conservation, many large and medium-sized enterprises, such as iron and steel metallurgy, petrochemical industry, thermal power plants, etc., have taken improving combustion efficiency, reduced energy consumption, reduced pollutant emissions, protecting the environment as an important way to improve product quality and enhance enterprise competitiveness.

oxygen sensor

Generally speaking, the direct way to improve the combustion efficiency is to continuously monitor the composition of flue gas in the flue gas analysis instrument (such as a flue gas analyzer, combustion efficiency tester, zirconia oxygen content detector), then analyze O2 content and CO content in flue gas, adjust the flow rate of combustion air and fuel, and determine better air consumption coefficient. Therefore, as an industrial tool to improve combustion efficiency, the oxygen sensors’ response time and measurement accuracy become key performance indicators. Due to its simple structure, short response time, wide measurement range (from PPM to percentage), high operating temperature (600℃-1200℃) and small maintenance, zirconia oxygen sensor has been widely used in metallurgy, chemical industry, electric power, automobile, and other fields.

Principle of zirconia sensor

The figure below is the schematic diagram of oxygen measurement with an oxygen probe. Porous platinum (Pt) electrodes were sintered on the two sides of the zirconia electrolyte (usually a zirconia tube). At a certain temperature, when the oxygen concentration on both sides of the electrolyte is different, the oxygen molecules on the high concentration side (air) are adsorbed on the platinum electrode and combine with electrons to form oxygen ions, making the electrode positively charged. The oxygen ions then migrate through the oxygen ion vacancy in the electrolyte to the Pt electrode on the low oxygen concentration side, releasing electrons and transforming them into oxygen molecules, making the electrode negatively charged.

This creates a certain electromotive force between the two electrodes. The zirconia electrolyte, the platinum electrode, and the gas with different oxygen concentrations on both sides constitute the oxygen probe, which is called the zirconia concentration difference cell. Then, by measuring the gas temperature and the output electromotive force, the oxygen partial pressure (concentration) can be calculated by the nengest equation, which is the basic detection principle of the zirconia oxygen sensor.

Common types of zirconia oxygen sensors

At present, the commonly used zirconia oxygen sensor includes a detection probe and direct insertion oxygen probe.

Detector probe

The sampling method is to introduce the measured gas into zirconia through a guide tube and then heat the zirconia to the working temperature (above 750℃) through a heating element. Zirconia is typically tubular and the electrode is porous platinum. Its advantage is that it is not affected by the temperature of the gas detected, and the oxygen content of the gas can be detected by using different flow guides at different temperatures.

This flexibility is used in much industrial on-line detection. Its disadvantages are slow response; the structure is complex and easy to affect the detection accuracy; when there are many impurities in the measured gas, the sampling tube is easy to be blocked; the porous platinum electrode is easy to be corroded by sulfur and arsenic or blocked by fine dust, etc. When the temperature of the detected gas is low (0-650℃), or when the measured gas is clean, it is suitable to use this detection method, such as oxygen measurement by nitrogen production machine and laboratory.

Direct probe

The direct insertion method is to directly insert zirconia into the gas measured at high temperature and directly detect the oxygen content in the gas. It uses the high temperature of the measured gas to bring zirconia to its operating temperature without the need for additional heaters.

The key technology of the direct insertion oxygen probe is the high-temperature sealing of ceramic material and the electrode. Due to the need to insert zirconia directly into the detection gas, the length of the oxygen probe is required to be relatively high. The effective length is about 500mm ~ 1000mm, and the special environment length is up to 1500mm, as well as high requirements for detection accuracy, working stability and service life. Therefore, it is difficult to adopt the whole zirconia tubular structure of the traditional zirconia oxygen probe with a direct insert oxygen probe, and the zirconia and alumina tube connection structure with high technical requirements is mostly adopted. The sealing performance is one of the most important technologies for the zirconia oxygen probe. Currently, the most advanced connection mode in the world is the permanent welding of zirconia and alumina tubes together.

Compared with the method of sampling pattern detection, the direct insertion method has obvious advantages: zirconia directly contacts with gas; high detection accuracy; fast reaction speed and small maintenance.

Brief summary

The regulation of oxygen content is a powerful means to monitor combustion conditions and improve combustion efficiency, and the accuracy and time of the measurement of the sensor have put forward certain requirements. Zirconia, as a solid electrolyte, is used to transport conductive ions in oxygen sensors. At present, there are two kinds of zirconia oxygen sensors: detection type and direct insertion type. The direct insertion type probes are widely used because of their direct contact with the measured gas, high measurement accuracy and fast reaction time.

Stanford Advanced Materials supplies high-quality zirconia products to meet our customers’ R&D and production needs. Please visit for more information.

The Strength of Structural Ceramics: Zirconia

In order to enable the equipment to work in a variety of harsh environments, structural ceramics, as a new material with excellent mechanical, thermal and chemical properties, have gradually replaced similar metal products and occupied an important position in modern industry. Among them, zirconia ceramics, which has excellent mechanical and thermal properties, has become a famous strength in the field of structural ceramics.

Zirconia cylinder liner and plunger

Zirconia ceramic cylinder liner and plunger have the characteristics of wear resistance, corrosion resistance, high-temperature resistance, high strength, high hardness, long service life and high impact resistance, which are widely used in oil and gas operation equipment such as mud pump, oil pump, injection pump, and fracturing pump. Compared with metal products, its product performance has been improved by 8-10 times, which greatly improves the efficiency of oil and gas exploitation, reduces the cost of exploitation, and has good economic and social benefits.

Zirconia tubes

Sander accessories

With the wide use of new energy and nano-new materials, horizontal sand mill, vertical sand mill, mixing mills and other kinds of ultra-fine grinding equipment demand is rising. Because of its excellent performance, small wear and other advantages, zirconia ceramic accessories (including zirconia grinding media, turbine and left wheel, zirconia rods, grinding block, sieve, etc.) effectively improve the grinding efficiency of grinding equipment and reduce wear, so it is widely used in electrode materials, nanomaterials, ink, medicine, chemical industry, ceramics, and other industries.

Wear-resistant ceramic

Zirconia wear-resistant ceramics have the advantages of large hardness, high strength, good wear-resistant performance, long service life, heat shock and so on, and can withstand all kinds of tests in a harsh working environment, so it is often used for grinding and polishing materials, wear-resistant coating, pipe or equipment lining, equipment structure parts, and other fields. Common zirconia wear-resisting ceramic products are a wear-resisting cylinder, wear-resisting block, lining board, lining brick and liner, and so on, different product types and specifications can be selected according to different equipment and usage.

Yellow zirconia

The yellow zirconia is mainly used in various zirconia wire drawing wheel, wire drawing wheel, tower wheel. It has the characteristics of high strength, corrosion resistance, high wear resistance, good self-lubrication, good thermal stability, fatigue resistance, and high-cost performance.

Yttria Stabilized Zirconia (YSZ) Grinding Media

Zirconia grinding media and ball

Zirconia grinding balls are prepared by isostatic pressure process with micron and sub-nano zirconia and yttrium oxide as raw materials. Due to the characteristics of extremely low grinding loss, high density, strong toughness, high hardness, high temperature resistance, acid and alkali resistance, corrosion resistance, magnetic resistance, etc., it is often used in the ultra-fine grinding and dispersion of materials requiring “zero pollution” and high viscosity and high hardness, which is common in electronic ceramics, magnetic materials, zirconia, medicine and food, pigments, dyes, inks, special chemical industries.

Stanford Advanced Materials supplies high-quality zirconia products to meet our customers’ R&D and production needs. Please visit for more information.

Applications of Zirconia in Structural And Functional Ceramics

Zirconia is a kind of inorganic nonmetallic material with high-temperature resistance, corrosion resistance, abrasion resistance, and excellent electrical conductivity. Since the mid-1970s, developed countries have invested heavily in the research and development of zirconia products, extending the application field of zirconia to structural and functional materials. Zirconia is also one of the new high-performance materials in the national industrial policy, which is widely used in various industries.

Applications of zirconia in structural ceramics

In 1975, R.G.Garvie, Australia, prepared partially stabilized zirconia with calcium oxide as a stabilizer, and improved the toughness and strength of zirconia for the first time, which greatly expanded its application in the field of structural ceramics.

1. Zirconia ceramic bearings

Zirconia ceramic bearing has the characteristics of wear resistance, corrosion resistance, high-temperature resistance, high cold resistance, oil-free self-lubrication, resistance to magnetoelectric insulation, etc. It can be used in an extremely harsh environment and under special working conditions.

Zirconia ceramic bearings have been used in micro cooling fans, and the product life and noise stability are better than traditional ball and sliding bearing systems. Foxconn is the first company to use zirconia ceramic bearings in computer cooling fans.

2. Zirconia ceramic valve

At present, valves commonly used in various industries are made of metal materials. Due to the limitation of metal material itself, the corrosion damage of metal has a considerable impact on the working life, reliability and service life of valve wear resistance.

The working climate of the valve pipeline is very complicated. Hydrogen sulfide, carbon dioxide, and some organic acids in oil, gas, and reservoir water increase the destructive power of their surfaces, rapidly disabling them. Zirconia ceramic valve has excellent wear resistance, corrosion resistance, high-temperature resistance, and thermal shock resistance, so it is suitable for this field.

3. Zirconia abrasive material

Zirconia ball has the advantages of high hardness, low wear rate and long service life, which can greatly reduce the pollution of grinding materials and ensure the quality of products. Besides that, zirconia material has high density and strong impact energy when used as a grinding medium, which can greatly improve the grinding dispersion efficiency. Good chemical stability determines its corrosion resistance and can be used in acidic and alkaline media.

Applications of zirconia in functional ceramics

1. Zirconia ceramic knives

Zirconia ceramic knife has the characteristics of high strength, wear resistance, no rust, no oxidation, acid and alkali resistance, anti-static, and no reaction with the food. Its body is as shiny as jade, which also makes it an ideal high-tech green knife. At present, the main products on the market are zirconia ceramic knife, scissors, razor, scalpel and so on, which has become popular in Europe, America, and Japan in recent years.

zirconia ceramic knife

2. Zirconia high-temperature heating element

Zirconia is an insulating material at room temperature, its resistivity is as high as 1015 Ω cm, and it can conduct electricity when the temperature to 600 ℃. When the temperature reaches 1000℃ above, it is a good conductor and can be used as 1800℃ high-temperature heating element, with the highest operating temperature of 2400℃. At present, zirconia has been successfully used in heating elements and equipment with an oxidation atmosphere above 2000℃.

3. Zirconia bioceramics

The quality of ceramic tooth material directly affects its quality and patients’ health. The inner crown of porcelain teeth is made of different metal materials, which is easy to oxidize with saliva. Since there is no metal inner canopy, zirconia ceramic teeth have good transparency, excellent gloss, and effectively avoid tooth allergies and gum black lines.

4. Zirconia coating material

Zirconia thermal barrier ceramic coating material with a high-performance stabilizer such as yttrium oxide (Y2O3) is mainly used in high-performance turbine aero-engine. The thermal barrier coating uses ceramic insulation and corrosion resistance to protect the metal material, which can not only improve the fuel combustion efficiency but also greatly extend the life of the engine. Thermal barrier coating has important application value in aviation, aerospace, surface ships, large thermal power generation, and automobile power, etc. It is one of the most important technologies in modern national defense.

5. Zirconia oxygen sensor

Oxygen sensors are essential in the automotive industry for engines that use three-way catalytic converters to reduce pollution emissions. Currently, there are two kinds of oxygen sensors in use: titanium oxide and zirconia. Japanese scientists made a porous oxygen sensor out of zirconia, which is installed in an engine to automatically detect the ratio of oxygen to combustion gas in the engine, and automatically control the ratio of input gas and output gas, thus greatly reducing the harmful gas emissions from cars.

Stanford Advanced Materials supplies high-quality zirconia ceramic products to meet our customers’ R&D and production needs. Please visit for more information.

Why Are Zirconia Ceramic Teeth So Expensive?

The all-ceramic dental prosthesis has excellent mechanical properties, no gingival inflammation, and excellent biocompatibility, and it has no obstruction to X-ray rays. In addition, it has excellent wear resistance, corrosion resistance, and aesthetic properties of no gingival black edge and emulating natural teeth, all of these make it the first choice of dental repair materials.

Zirconia ceramic teeth

At present, there are three kinds of materials used in all-ceramic dental restorations, namely, zirconia all-ceramic dental restorations, cast ceramic dental restorations and alumina all-ceramic dental restorations.

Among the three kinds of all-ceramic teeth, zirconia all-ceramic teeth are the strongest dental restorations. Its fracture toughness ratio is two or three times that of alumina all-ceramic, and it is not easy to break the teeth with it; secondly, it can be used for cosmetic dentistry and restoration of missing teeth. It can be used to repair multiple teeth, which can be used to repair even crowns, which can perfectly solve the problem that the strength of ceramic casting material is too poor to make continuous crown; moreover, its color is perfectly adjustable, so it can be used to make very realistic dentures.

Teeth plant

Zirconia denture, as such an excellent product, should have been favored by the public. But zirconia restorations are expensive, costing thousands or even thousands of dollars for a single crown, which makes it unaffordable for ordinary people.

Why are zirconia ceramic teeth so expensive?

The main reason for the high price of zirconia ceramic teeth is that the overall production cost of zirconia teeth is really high.

The zirconia prosthesis underwent a series of complex processes before it was put into the patient’s mouth to achieve its chewing, vocal and aesthetic functions, including raw material production of raw material manufacturers, production of zirconia block manufacturers, dental surgeons’ spare tooth mold, processing design, selection of the right zirconium block, cutting, dyeing, sintering, dyeing, polishing, dental doctor’s grinding, etc. As long as one of the above processes goes wrong, it will affect the currently visible quality of the restoration or the currently invisible but potential quality problems in the future.

Zirconium blocks used for all-ceramic teeth can cost anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars just from the cost of materials alone. From the above analysis, we can see that the proportion of the raw material cost is not large, but the difficulty of processing leads to an increase in the overall preparation cost.

Different Types of Dental Crown

At present, the forming of zirconia ceramic crowns is dominated by CNC processing technology, which has advantages in product precision and processing efficiency. However, due to the material removal by cutting tools on zirconium plates (blocks) during processing, the cost of ceramic crowns remains high due to the waste of materials and the wear of cutting needles, and microcracks are easily introduced in the cutting process, leading to the failure of the restoration. The current zirconia denture is semi-machined, and the zirconia teeth processed by a professional milling machine need to be used to repair the maxillofacial fossae and furrows with a crack drill or a ball drill to achieve a realistic effect. If human ingenuity is lacking, it can also be said that it has a little personality in shape and edge treatment.

To sum up, the waste of raw materials and the high labor cost of advanced technical workers inevitably increase the preparation cost of zirconia teeth due to the inevitable mistakes in manual processing. Therefore, seeking a new dental ceramic prosthesis forming technology is the characteristic of dental ceramic research and the key point of the clinical prosthesis.

Zirconia Ceramic Conversion Film Used in Automobile Coating Field

Phosphating is the most common pretreatment technology in the field of automobile coating. A phosphate conversion film is produced after phosphating the body steel plate, which can not only protect the base metal but also improve the adhesion between the metal and the coating. All cars are phosphated before they are painted.

A-typical-phosphating-and-E-coating-process. Source:

However, the traditional phosphating process has the defects of high energy consumption and high pollution. In addition, nitrite in the phosphating bath has high carcinogenicity, and its storage and use requirements are high, which increases the burden on enterprises. Therefore, under the dual drive of environmental requirements and energy cost, the phosphorus-free film-forming technology represented by the new zirconia conversion film technology has become the development consensus of green coating for automobiles.

Principle of film formation of zirconia ceramics

Zirconia ceramic film-forming technology is one-step film-forming, which means a surface treatment agent is used to treat the metal surface. The following diagram shows the film formation principle of a zirconia ceramic on the steel surface. The main materials are fluoro zirconic acid and zirconium salt. Zirconic acid and zirconium salt react directly with the metal substrate, and the zirconia ceramic film formed is attached to the surface of the metal substrate to play a role in corrosion protection.

At present, the sol-gel is the main method to produce zirconia conversion film. The so-called sol-gel refers to the formation of the three-dimensional network configuration of colloidal particles crosslinked with each other, which can mechanically wrap a large number of solvents inside the aggregate, making it no longer flow and become a semi-solid state and gel. When the density of sol particles in colloidal solution is higher than that in solution, the sol particles tend to sink under the action of gravity. If some parameters in the solution are changed to make the deposition rate of colloidal particles greater than the diffusion rate, the colloidal particles will rapidly precipitate out of the solution.

Characteristics of zirconia ceramic film

In terms of film properties, the ceramic coating formed by zirconia conversion film can completely replace the traditional phosphating film. In addition, zirconia conversion film also has the characteristic of being lightweight, while its film thickness is about 50nm. The film thickness means the low film weight, and the weight of the traditional phosphating film is usually 2-3g/m2, while that of zirconia conversion film is only 20-200mg/m2. The weight of zirconia conversion film varies according to the raw materials provided by the supplier, but in general, the weight of zirconia conversion film is about 200 times lower than that of traditional phosphating film.

In terms of technological process, the new zirconia conversion film technology is simple and fast, and generally only takes about 30s to form a complete film, which can significantly reduce the cost of water consumption, wastewater treatment, energy, and manpower.

Ceramic Film

Moreover, the new process is suitable for a variety of metals (Fe, Zn, Al, Mg), so various plates can be mixed line processing. In the process of treatment, zinc-plated plate and aluminum plate without waste slag formation, only a small amount of slag was produced in the treatment of cold-rolled plate. The resulting slag can be easily removed using a conventional phosphating system, without clogging the nozzle or adversely affecting coating properties or the appearance of the electrophoretic coating.

In daily process management, the bath of the new zirconia film-forming technology is very stable and easy to control. At ordinary times, the temperature and PH value are only needed to be controlled in production, which does not need to be like zinc phosphating that requires regular daily testing of total acid, free acid and zinc, nickel, manganese content, and many other parameters, so a lot of process management costs are saved.

Zirconia film-forming technology has been applied earlier in foreign countries. Henkel group of Germany has the absolute right to speak in this field. As early as 2002, Henkel was the first company to introduce zirconium pre-treatment materials suitable for a variety of plates; in 2008, GM used Henkel’s zirconium pretreated materials at its SanJose Dos Campos plant in Brazil; Henkel’s pretreatment materials were also used at Ford’s TwinCity plant during the same period.

Stanford Advanced Materials supplies high-quality zirconium and zirconia products to meet our customers’ R&D and production needs. Please visit for more information.