The development, fabrication, and material characterization of polypropylene composites reinforced with carbon nanofiber and hydroxyapatite nanorod hybrid fillers
Cheng Zhu Liao,1,2 Hoi Man Wong,3 Kelvin Wai Kwok Yeung,3 Sie Chin Tjong2
1Department of Materials Science and Engineering, South University of Science and Technology of China, Shenzhen, People's Republic of China; 2Department of Physics and Materials Science, City University of Hong Kong, 3Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Abstract: This study focuses on the design, fabrication, microstructural and property characterization, and biocompatibility evaluation of polypropylene (PP) reinforced with carbon nanofiber (CNF) and hydroxyapatite nanorod (HANR) fillers. The purpose is to develop advanced PP/CNF–HANR hybrids with good mechanical behavior, thermal stability, and excellent biocompatibility for use as craniofacial implants in orthopedics. Several material-examination techniques, including X-ray diffraction, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, thermogravimetric analysis, differential scanning calorimetry, tensile tests, and impact measurement are used to characterize the microstructural, mechanical, and thermal properties of the hybrids. Furthermore, osteoblastic cell cultivation and colorimetric assay are also employed for assessing their viability on the composites. The CNF and HANR filler hybridization yields an improvement in Young's modulus, impact strength, thermal stability, and biocompatibility of PP. The PP/2% CNF–20% HANR hybrid composite is found to exhibit the highest elastic modulus, tensile strength, thermal stability, and biocompatibility.
Keywords: nanocomposite, implant, cellular viability, mechanical behavior
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