Influence of environmental conditions in bovine bone ablation by ultrafast laser Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Ultrafast lasers are promising tools for surgical applications requiring precise tissue cutting. Shallow ablation depth and slow rate as well as collateral damage are common barriers limiting the use of laser in clinical applications. Localized cooling with water and/or air jet is known to reduce collateral thermal damage. We studied the influence of environmental conditions including air, compressed air flow, still water and water jet on ablation depth, ablation rate and surface morphology on bovine bone samples with an 800 nm femtosecond laser. At 15 J/cm2 , no thermal effect was observed by electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy. The experimental results indicate that environmental conditions play a significant role in laser ablation. The deepest cavity and highest ablation rate were achieved under the compressed air flow condition, which is attributed to debris removal during the ablation process. The shallowest ablation depth and lowest ablation rates were associated with water flushing. For surface morphology, smooth surface and the absence of microcracks were observed under air flow conditions, while rougher surfaces and minor microcracks were observed under other conditions. These results suggest that ultrafast ablation of bone can be more efficient and with better surface qualities if assisted with blowing air jet.

publication date

  • June 2019