Polylactic acid/multi walled carbon nanotubes (PLA/MWCNT) nanocomposite for 3D printing of medical devices
Keywords:Polylactic acid (PLA), Multi walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT), 3D printing, Biomaterials, Nanocomposites
In recent years, the composite nanomaterials area has had a great development impact in health sciences. Biomaterials depict as one of the most promising since they are compatible with additive manufacturing (AM) techniques. It is also possible to use them to mold specific medical parts. Composite nanomaterials have shown good biocompatibility and low toxicity to have benefits equal to or greater than metals (i.e., Co-Cr alloy). The purpose of this study is to develop a nanocomposite biomaterial (PLA/MWCNTf) from Polylactic Acid (PLA) and functionalized Multi Walled Carbon Nanotubes (MWCNTf) to evidence its potential application in 3D printing of orthopedic fixation devices. PLA/MWCNTf nanocomposite was prepared by solution blending technique, incorporating a proportion of 0.5 wt% of MWCNTf to the PLA matrix. TGA analysis of the PLA/MWCNTf was used to determine the thermal stability, a slight increase was found compared to the PLA. FTIR spectroscopy confirmed the presence of carboxylic acid groups in the MWCNTf which improves good incorporation of the nanotubes in the PLA matrix. Additionally, Raman spectroscopy, SEM, and AFM micrographs were used to verify MWCNTf reached the PLA surface homogeneously. Additive manufacturing preparation was done by extrusion molding of PLA/MWCNTf as well as its 3D printing.
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