Effect of electrospinning parameters on the morphology of polyurethane/polycaprolactone fibers
Introduction: Electrospinning is now being widely used as a potential tool for tissue engineering to manufacturing tissue grafts, wound dressings, medical fabrics, and drug delivery systems. Regarding biomaterials, polyurethane (PU) and polycaprolactone (PCL) and their combination are prospective candidates for the fabrication of electrospun membranes used in tissue engineering due to their suitable biocompatibility, biodegradability, and mechanical properties. Thus, this study investigates how to manipulate the electrospinning process of PU/PCL to obtain nanofibers with desired features.
Methods: PU/PCL dissolved in N,N-Dimethylformamide, and tetrahydrofuran were electrospun with various applied voltages, tip-to-collector distances, and flow rates. The collected membranes were observed using a scanning electron microscope to evaluate the effect of electrospinning conditions on their morphology and fiber diameters.
Results: Slower flow rate, longer tip-to-collector distance, and higher voltage all led to smaller, more uniform fibers. By manipulating these factors, the study yielded a non-woven, porous membrane with uniform, separated nanofibers at the condition set of 12 cm tip-to-collector, 20 kV applied, and 0.5 mL/h flow rate.
Conclusion: The study determined the effect of electrospinning parameters on the morphology of polycaprolactone/polyurethane fibers and obtained membrane with suitable properties for further research.