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Product Code: JLA_14_1_52

Kunio Awazu
Mikio Tanaka
Institute of Free Electron Laser, Osaka University, 2-9-5, Tsudayamate, Hirakata, Osaka 573-0128, Japan

Junji Kato
Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, Tokyo Medical and Dental-University, Japan

Tuning a laser wavelength to the stretching vibration of specific biomolecules has some advantages in ablating hard tissue and for surface modification induced by the photothermal or the photomechanical interaction. A tunable pulsed transversely excited atmosphere CO2 laser was tuned to 9.45 μm, which is the stretching vibration of phosphoric acid in hydroxyapatite. Dried cow dentine was irradiated at 36 W/cm2. The infrared absorption spectra of the bovine dentine sample were measured using a microscopic Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR). After laser irradiation, x-ray fluorescence of elements contained in a 300 μm×300 μm irradiated area was measured by energy dispersive x ray (EMAX-5770). This laser irradiation reduced the peak wavelength of the dentine surface from 9.76 to 8.93 μm. The atomic ratio of Ca/P was changed from 1.4 to 1.9 as measured with x-ray diffraction. These results show the potential for application of a 9.45μm CO2 laser to ablation and modification of the dentine surface as measured by FTIR absorption microscopy. © 2002 Laser Institute of America.

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