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Visualizations help improve dental filling materials

3D visualizations illustrate the effectiveness of light sources used to harden dental filling materials.

The Advanced Visualization Lab (AVL) and IU School of Dentistry PhD candidate Afnan Al-Zain collaborated to produce 3D visualizations which illustrate the effectiveness of different light sources used to harden dental filling materials when they are being cured.

Common curing units do not produce uniform light. This may produce a filling with less than ideal properties and early filling failure. The visualizations produced in this project helped to demonstrate potential deficiencies in the curing process. Overcoming this deficiency could increase the lifetime of dental fillings and contribute to optimal patient care. Unlike previous work, which had measured only along the top and bottom surfaces, Ms. Al-Zain collected measurements throughout the entire 3D volume of the sample. The 3D visualizations illustrate the first-ever measurements of the effects of these curing lights within the volume of a 3D specimen.

Caption:  Afnan Al-Zain in her laboratory at the IU School of Dentistry