Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

A Practical and Systematic Review of Weibull Statistics for Reporting Strengths of Dental Materials



Janet Quinn, George D. Quinn


Objective: To review the history, theory and current applications of Weibull analysis sufficient to make informed decisions regarding practical use of the analysis in dental material strength testing. Data: References are made to examples in the engeering and dental literature, but this report also includes illustrative analysis with fractographic examination and Weibull plots and parameters obtained for a dense alumina and two feldspathic porcelains. Sources: Informational sources include Weibull's original articles, later articles specific to applicaitons and theoretical foundations of Weibull analysis, texts on statistics and fracture mechanics and the international standards literature. Study Selection: The chosen Weibull analysis are used to illustrate technique, the importance of flaw size distributions, phyiscal meaning of Weibull parameters and concepts of "equivalent volumes" to compare measured strengths obtained from different test configurations. Conclusions: Weibull analysis has a strong theoretical basis and can be of particular value in dental applicaions, primarily because of test specimen size limitations and the use of different test configurations. Also endemic to dental materials, however, is increased difficulty in satisfying application requirements, such as confirming fracture origin type and diligence in obtaining quality strength data.
Dental Materials


Weibull, review, Weibull standards, flaw population, extreme vlue distribution, strength distribution, characteristic strength, strength comparision, equivalent volume, equivalent area, alumina


Quinn, J. and Quinn, G. (2009), A Practical and Systematic Review of Weibull Statistics for Reporting Strengths of Dental Materials, Dental Materials, [online], (Accessed May 25, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created September 10, 2009, Updated October 12, 2021