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Freeze extrusion fabrication of 13–93 bioactive glass scaffolds for bone repair

A solid freeform fabrication technique, freeze extrusion fabrication (FEF), was investigated for the creation of three-dimensional bioactive glass (13–93) scaffolds with pre-designed porosity and pore architecture. An aqueous mixture of bioactive glass particles and polymeric additives with a paste-like consistency was extruded through a narrow nozzle, and deposited layer-by-layer in a cold environment according to a computer-aided design (CAD) file. Following sublimation of the ice in a freeze dryer, the construct was heated according to a controlled schedule to burn out the polymeric additives (below ~500°C), and to densify the glass phase at higher temperature (1 h at 700°C). The sintered scaffolds had a grid-like microstructure of interconnected pores, with a porosity of ~50%, pore width of ~300 μm, and dense glass filaments (struts) with a diameter or width of ~300 μm. The scaffolds showed an elastic response during mechanical testing in compression, with an average compressive strength of 140 MPa and an elastic modulus of 5–6 GPa, comparable to the values for human cortical bone. These bioactive glass scaffolds created by the FEF method could have potential application in the repair of load-bearing bones.

Authors:   Nikhil D. Doiphode, Tieshu Huang, Ming C. Leu, Mohamed N. Rahaman, Delbert E. Day
Journal:   Journal of Materials Science: Materials in Medicine
Year:   2011
DOI:   10.1007/s10856-011-4236-4
Publication date:   29-Jan-2011
Facts, background information, dossiers
  • glass
  • temperature
  • ICE
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