The effects of drying techniques on the compr-essive strength of gypsum products


Excess water in set dental stone decreases its strength.So different methods were used to expel excess water but thecompressive strength may be affected by drying technique.The purpose of this study was to evaluate the compressive strengthof two types of set dental stone after air, conventionaloven and microwave drying techniques.A total of 60 stone specimens (30 specimens made fromSilky Rock stone and 30 Zeta stone) were prepared by the aidof an acrylic split mold according to ADA Specification No.25. Specimens were divided into six groups of 10 identicalspecimens for each. Then groups were either dried by air,conventional oven or microwave oven. Using UnconfinedCompression Machine, the specimens were loaded by a crosshead speed of 1 mm/minute till the specimen being fractured.The load required to fracture the stone specimens was recordedand analyzed using analysis of variance followed by Duncan’sMultiple Range Test for the statistical comparisons betweendrying techniques at a significance level of p< 0.05, andStudent’s t–test was used to compare between the two stonetypes.The results revealed that high significant differenceswere present between the different drying techniques(p<0.0001) with air dried specimens were significantly strongerthan others and microwave dried specimens were significantlystronger than conventional oven dried specimens. SilkyRock (type IV) stone was significantly stronger than Zeta(type III) stone (p<0.001).From this study, it could be concluded that the highestcompressive strength can be obtained by air drying of the stonefor 24 hours, while microwave drying technique give betterresults than conventional oven drying technique with theadvantage of time saving over the two other drying techniques.