Describe how toughened zirconia works, and how this can be used to toughen other materials such as aluminum oxide.
Zirconium dioxide (ZrO2), sometimes known as zirconia, is a white crystalline oxide of zirconium. Its commonest naturally occurring form, with a monoclinic crystalline structure, is called baddeleyite. Its cubic crystalline form, called 'cubic zirconia', is rarely, if ever, found in nature, but is made in various colours for sale as a gemstone.
It is used as a refractory, in insulation, abrasives, enamels and glazes, in high-temperature fuel cells and oxygen sensors.
Zirconium dioxide is one of the most studied ceramic materials. Pure ...
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