Electroplated nickel coating on cemented carbide is a potential pretreatment technique for providing an interlayer prior to diamond deposition on the hard metal substrate. The electroplated nickel coating is expected to be of high quality, for example, indicated by having adequate thickness and uniformity. Electroplating parameters should be set accordingly for this purpose. In this study, the gap distances between the electrodes and duration of electroplating process are the investigated variables. Their effect on the coating thickness and uniformity was analyzed and quantified using design of experiment. The nickel deposition was carried out by electroplating in a standard Watt's solution keeping other plating parameters (current: 0.1 Amp, electric potential: 1.0 V, and pH: 3.5) constant. The gap distance between anode and cathode varied at 5, 10, and 15 mm, while the plating time was 10, 20, and 30 minutes. Coating thickness was found to be proportional to the plating time and inversely proportional to the electrode gap distance, while the uniformity tends to improve at a large electrode gap. Empirical models of both coating thickness and uniformity were developed within the ranges of the gap distance and plating time settings, and an optimized solution was determined using these models.
There are millions of orthopedic surgeries and dental implantation procedures performed every year globally. Most of them involve machining of bones and cartilage. However, theoretical and analytical study on bone machining is lagging behind its practice and implementation. This study views bone machining as a machining process with bovine bone as the workpiece material. Turning process which makes the basis of the actually used drilling process was experimented. The focus is on evaluating the effects of three machining parameters, that is, cutting speed, feed, and depth of cut, to machining responses, that is, cutting forces and surface roughness resulted by the turning process. Response surface methodology was used to quantify the relation between the machining parameters and the machining responses. The turning process was done at various cutting speeds (29-156 m/min), depths of cut (0.03 -0.37 mm), and feeds (0.023-0.11 mm/rev). Empirical models of the resulted cutting force and surface roughness as the functions of cutting speed, depth of cut, and feed were developed. Observation using the developed empirical models found that within the range of machining parameters evaluated, the most influential machining parameter to the cutting force is depth of cut, followed by feed and cutting speed. The lowest cutting force was obtained at the lowest cutting speed, lowest depth of cut, and highest feed setting. For surface roughness, feed is the most significant machining condition, followed by cutting speed, and with depth of cut showed no effect. The finest surface finish was obtained at the lowest cutting speed and feed setting.
Electrospinning is a simple and efficient process in producing nanofibers. To fabricate nanofibers made of a blend of two constituent materials, co-axial electrospinning method is an option. In this method, the constituent materials contained in separate barrels are simultaneously injected using two syringe nozzles arranged co-axially and the materials mix during the spraying process forming core and shell of the nanofibers. In this study, co-axial electrospinning method is used to fabricate nanofibers made of polyvinyl alcohol and maghemite (γ-Fe2O3). The concentration of polyvinyl alcohol and amount of maghemite nanoparticle loading were varied, at 5 and 10 w/v% and at 1-10 v/v%, respectively. The mechanical properties (strength and Young's modulus), porosity, and biocompatibility properties (contact angle and cell viability) of the electrospun mats were evaluated, with the same mats fabricated by regular single-nozzle electrospinning method as the control. The co-axial electrospinning method is able to fabricate the expected polyvinyl alcohol/maghemite nanofiber mats. It was noticed that the polyvinyl alcohol/maghemite electrospun mats have lower mechanical properties (i.e. strength and stiffness) and porosity, more hydrophilicity (i.e. lower contact angle), and similar cell viability compared to the mats fabricated by single-nozzle electrospinning method.
The potential of electrospinning process to fabricate ultrafine fibers as building blocks for tissue engineering scaffolds is well recognized. The scaffold construct produced by electrospinning process depends on the quality of the fibers. In electrospinning, material selection and parameter setting are among many factors that contribute to the quality of the ultrafine fibers, which eventually determine the performance of the tissue engineering scaffolds. The major challenge of conventional electrospun scaffolds is the nature of electrospinning process which can only produce two-dimensional electrospun mats, hence limiting their applications. Researchers have started to focus on overcoming this limitation by combining electrospinning with other techniques to fabricate three-dimensional scaffold constructs. This article reviews various polymeric materials and their composites/blends that have been successfully electrospun for tissue engineering scaffolds, their mechanical properties, and the various parameters settings that influence the fiber morphology. This review also highlights the secondary processes to electrospinning that have been used to develop three-dimensional tissue engineering scaffolds as well as the steps undertaken to overcome electrospinning limitations.
The mechanics of damage and fracture process in unidirectional carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) composites subjected to shear loading (Mode II) were examined using the experimental method of the three-point end-notch flexure (3ENF) test. The CFRP composite consists of [0o]16 with an insert film in the middle plane for a starter defect. A 3ENF test sample with a span of 50 mm and interface delamination crack length of 12.5 mm was tested to yield the load vs. deformation response. A sudden load drop observed at maximum force value indicates the onset of delamination crack propagation. The results are used to extract the energy release rate, GIIC, of the laminates with an insert film starter defect. The effect of the starter defect on the magnitude of GIIC was examined using the CFRP composite sample with a Mode II delamination pre-crack. The higher magnitude of GIIC for the sample with insert film starter defect was attributed to the initial straight geometry of the notch/interface crack and the toughness of the resin at the notch front of the fabricated film insert. The fractured sample was examined using a micro-computerized tomography scanner to establish the shape of the internal delamination crack front. Results revealed that the interface delamination propagated in a non-uniform manner, leaving a curved-shaped crack profile.
Maghemite (γ-Fe2O3) nanoparticle with its unique magnetic properties is recently known to enhance the cell growth rate. In this study, γ-Fe2O3 is mixed into polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) matrix and then electrospun to form nanofibers. Design of experiments was used to determine the optimum parameter settings for the electrospinning process so as to produce elctrospun mats with the preferred characteristics such as good morphology, Young's modulus and porosity. The input factors of the electrospinnning process were nanoparticles content (1-5%), voltage (25-35 kV), and flow rate (1-3 ml/h) while the responses considered were Young's modulus and porosity. Empirical models for both responses as a function of the input factors were developed and the optimum input factors setting were determined, and found to be at 5% nanoparticle content, 35 kV voltage, and 1 ml/h volume flow rate. The characteristics and performance of the optimum PVA/γ-Fe2O3 nanofiber mats were compared with those of neat PVA nanofiber mats in terms of morphology, thermal properties, and hydrophilicity. The PVA/γ-Fe2O3 nanofiber mats exhibited higher fiber diameter and surface roughness yet similar thermal properties and hydrophilicity compared to neat PVA PVA/γ-Fe2O3 nanofiber mats. Biocompatibility test by exposing the nanofiber mats with human blood cells was performed. In terms of clotting time, the PVA/γ-Fe2O3 nanofibers exhibited similar behavior with neat PVA. The PVA/γ-Fe2O3 nanofibers also showed higher cells proliferation rate when MTT (3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide) assay was done using human skin fibroblast cells. Thus, the PVA/γ-Fe2O3 electrospun nanofibers can be a promising biomaterial for tissue engineering scaffolds.
This article reports the in vitro degradation and cytotoxicity assessment of Zn-3Mg alloy developed for biodegradable bone implants. The alloy was prepared using casting, and its microstructure was composed of Mg2Zn11 intermetallic phase distributed within a Zn-rich matrix. The degradation assessment was done using potentiodynamic polarization and electrochemical impedance spectrometry. The cell viability and the function of normal human osteoblast cells were assessed using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H-tetrazolium and alkaline phosphatase extracellular enzyme activity assays. The results showed that the degradation rate of the alloy was slower than those of pure Zn and pure Mg due to the formation of a high polarization resistance oxide film. The alloy was cytocompatible with the normal human osteoblast cells at low concentrations (<0.5 mg/mL), and its alkaline phosphatase activity was superior to pure Mg. This assessment suggests that Zn-3Mg alloy has the potential to be developed as a material for biodegradable bone implants, but the toxicity limit must be carefully observed.
The use of electrospinning process in fabricating tissue engineering scaffolds has received great attention in recent years due to its simplicity. The nanofibers produced via electrospinning possessed morphological characteristics similar to extracellular matrix of most tissue components. Porosity plays a vital role in developing tissue engineering scaffolds because it influences the biocompatibility performance of the scaffolds. In this study, maghemite (γ-Fe2O3) was mixed with polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) and subsequently electrospun to produce nanofibers. Five factors; nanoparticles content, voltage, flow rate, spinning distance, and rotating speed were varied to produce the electrospun nanofibrous mats with high porosity value. Empirical model was developed using response surface methodology to analyze the effect of these factors to the porosity. The results revealed that the optimum porosity (90.85%) was obtained using 5% w/v nanoparticle content, 35kV of voltage, 1.1ml/h volume flow rate of solution, 8cm spinning distance and 2455rpm of rotating speed. The empirical model was verified successfully by performing confirmation experiments. The properties of optimum PVA/γ-Fe2O3 nanofiber mats such as fiber diameter, mechanical properties, and contact angle were investigated. In addition, cytocompatibility test, in vitro degradation rate, and MTT assay were also performed. Results revealed that high porosity biodegradable γ-Fe2O3/polyvinyl alcohol nanofiber mats have low mechanical properties but good degradation rates and cytocompatibility properties. Thus, they are suitable for low load bearing biomedical application or soft tissue engineering scaffold.