Thursday, November 11, 2010: 2:35 PM
Grand Ballroom G (Salt Palace Convention Center)
Efficient production of nanofibers would enable their wider application in filters, protein purification, tissue engineering scaffolds, smart textiles, catalysts and photovoltaics. The biggest current limitation is the absence of scalable methods that can achieve high-volume nanofiber production. We will present a “shear nanospinning” technique that allows scalable fabrication of sub-micron diameter fibers by antisolvent-induced polymer precipitation under shear stress. The fibers are formed in the bulk liquid without the use of nozzles or spinnerets, by the combined action of shear and phase separation. The process is especially suitable for the fabrication of composite fibers with various particle additives because it eliminates the extrusion of fibers through nozzles which can be clogged. It can be used in the fabrication of nanofibers from many classes of materials, including hydrophilic, chemically or biologically active polymers. We demonstrate the technique's versatility by making fibers from cellulose acetate, poly-lactic acid, magnetic nanoparticle-containing fibers and composite polymer-inorganic nanofibers.