Gavel Center

Are you interested in materials research?  The Dr. J Murray Gavel Center, established in 1992, is dedicated to in-vitro research in restorative dental materials and is open to all TUSDM researchers. The Center is located in DHS 833 and is staffed full-time with a research technician for assistance. The equipment available for use in the Gavel lab includes:

  • Instron® 5566A – a universal testing machine that is used to evaluate mechanical properties of materials, including compressive, shear bond, and tensile strength tests.
  • EcoMet™ 250 – a grinding machine that uses abrasive paper to expose specimen enamel and/or dentin.
  • IsoMet™ 1000 – a precision cutter designed for sectioning various types of materials.
  • MicroMet® 2104 – tests Vickers hardness through micro-indentation.
  • VWR™ Thermocycler – mimics the environment of the mouth by transferring samples through hot and cold water baths, simulating material aging.
  • Olympus® Crystaleye Spectrophotomer – used in color analysis.
  • Orion Star™ A214 – measures solution concentrations of Fluoride and pH.
  • Olympus SZX16 – a stereo microscope used for visual analysis.
  • High and low-speed drill setups – each equipped with an air and water syringe.

Contact the Gavel Center’s technician, Dr. Mona Patel (617-636-0332 or, to schedule lab usage. Institutional Review Board (IRB) clearance and safety training are required before any work can begin.

Common Testing Methods: 

  • Compressive Strength
  • Shear Bond Strength
  • Tensile Strength
  • Deflection Studies
  • Dental Material Instruments and Equipment
  • Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM)
  • Water Absorption and Solubility
  • Microleakage
  • Three-Point Bend
  • Fluoride Release
  • Influence of pH on Dental Materials
  • Demineralization

Commonly Tested Materials:

  • Cements
  • Base/Liners
  • Composites
  • Implants
  • Adhesive Systems
  • Tissue Management Materials
  • Various Indirect Restorative Materials
  • Impression Materials
  • Provisional Materials
  • Glass Ionomers and RMGCIs
  • Prosthetic Materials
  • Endodontic Materials
  • Orthodontic Materials