Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > Formation of porous natural-synthetic polymer c...


Text available via DOI:

View graph of relations

Formation of porous natural-synthetic polymer composites using emulsion templating and supercritical fluid assisted impregnation

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2007
<mark>Journal</mark>Polymer Bulletin
Issue number5-6
Number of pages12
Pages (from-to)849-860
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Porous natural-synthetic polymer composites were prepared using an alginate emulsion templating step followed by supercritical carbon dioxide (sc-CO 2) assisted impregnation (and subsequent polymerisation) of synthetic monomer mixtures. In the impregnation step, an initiator and either 2-hydroxyethylmethacrylate (HEMA), butylmethacrylate (BMA), ethyleneglycoldimethacrylate (EGDMA) or trimethylolpropanetrimethacrylate (TRIM) monomers, respectively, were used. After impregnation into the porous alginate foam, the synthetic monomer(s) were polymerised in situ, forming porous composites with increased stiffness. A number of methods were used to assess the effects of the impregnation/polymerisation process including uniaxial compression testing, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), mercury intrusion porosimetry (MIP), helium pycnometry and Fourier transform infra-red (FTIR) spectroscopy. Our results suggest that alginate foams impregnated with HEMA show higher weight gains and are stiffer than those impregnated with BMA. Such stiffer porous composites are potentially better suited than the unmodified materials in applications such as tissue engineering (cell-seeded) scaffolds, where mechanical conditioning is desired to stimulate cells for development of neo tissue growth. © Springer-Verlag 2007.