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ZTA (Zirconia Toughened Alumina)

The main advantage of Zirconia Toughened Alumina (ZTA) is the additional strength and toughness over alumina with a lower cost than zirconia (YTZP, MSZ, CSZ).

The combination of aluminum oxide and 10-20% zirconium oxide provides a much higher strength, toughness, hardness and wear resistance than alumina alone.

The 20-30% increase in strength often provides the design criteria needed at a much lower cost than using zirconia.

A process called transformation toughening is the phenomenon that increases the fracture toughness of ZTA. When placed under stress, the zirconia particles change their crystal structure from a tetragonal to a monoclinic structure, causing a volume expansion that compresses the surrounding crack in the alumina matrix.

ZTA should be considered for any application where structural strength is needed that exceeds the standard alumina properties.

Prime Features
Higher strength than aluminaLower cost than zirconia
High corrosion resistanceHigh erosion resistance
High fracture toughnessCapable of a very fine surface finish


Typical Applications
StandoffsPump piston sleeves
Probe bodiesSensor bulbs
Pump componentsValve seals
Fluid delivery system componentsAnalytical instrument columns


Application Limitations

ZTA does provide a higher strength than alumina but the temperature limitation of 1500 C (2732 F) must be observed. Above this temperature the strength contribution of the zirconia is reduced.

Use in moist environments at temperatures above 250C also must be carefully considered as the zirconia is subject to low temperature degradation.


Superior Technical Ceramics Patent No. 8679995:

Our research teams work to expand the ability of our materials to solve the challenges of the operating conditions you are designing for.

Starting with select raw materials, our patented process provides consistent material properties that result in high quality, dependable ceramic components.