Precision ablation of dental enamel using a subpicosecond pulsed laser

A. V. Rode, E. G. Gamaly, B. Luther-Davies, B. T. Taylor, M. Graessel, J. M. Dawes*, A. Chan, R. M. Lowe, P. Hannaford

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

60 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In this study we report the use of ultra-short-pulsed near-infrared lasers for precision laser ablation of freshly extracted human teeth. The laser wavelength was ∼800nm, with pulsewidths of 95 and 150fs, and pulse repetition rates of 1kHz. The laser beam was focused to an approximate diameter of 50μm and was scanned over the tooth surface. The rise in the intrapulpal temperature was monitored by embedded thermocouples, and was shown to remain below 5°C when the tooth was air-cooled during laser treatment. The surface preparation of the ablated teeth, observed by optical and electron microscopy, showed no apparent cracking or heat effects, and the hardness and Raman spectra of the laser-treated enamel were not distinguishable from those of native enamel. This study indicates the potential for ultra-short-pulsed lasers to effect precision ablation of dental enamel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-239
Number of pages7
JournalAustralian Dental Journal
Volume48
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2003

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