Shape-memory alloys have properties that make them well suited to a variety of applications. One application for which their unique combination of properties (large elastic range, low modulus of elasticity, ability to deliver nearly constant forces over a wide range of deformations) seems ideally suited is for orthodontic retraction appliances where these properties are very desirable. The mechanical response of shape-memory alloys is modeled by a simple constitutive model that captures the essential superelastic behavior of the shape-memory wires. An initial value approach that iteratively converges to the appropriate boundary conditions is utilized to deliver numerical solutions. Qualitative agreement is shown with previous experimental works. The possible benefits of using such wires in an orthodontic retraction appliance are then investigated.

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