Hierarchically structured titanium foams for tissue scaffold applications

Gowsihan Poologasundarampilla, R. Singh, P. D. Lee, J. R. Jones, G. Poologasundarampillai, T. Post, T. C. Lindley, R. J. Dashwood

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    We present a novel route for producing a new class of titanium foams for use in biomedical implant applications. These foams are hierarchically porous, with both the traditional large (>300 μm) highly interconnected pores and, uniquely, wall struts also containing micron scale (0.5-5 μm) interconnected porosities. The fabrication method consists of first producing a porous oxide precursor via a gel casting method, followed by electrochemical reduction to produce a metallic foam. This method offers the unique ability to tailor the porosity at several scales independently, unlike traditional space-holder techniques. Reducing the pressure during foam setting increased the macro-pore size. The intra-strut pore size (and percentage) can be controlled independently of macro-pore size by altering the ceramic loading and sintering temperature during precursor production. Typical properties for an 80% porous Ti foam were a modulus of ∼1 GPa, a yield strength of 8 MPa and a permeability of 350 Darcies, all of which are in the range required for biomedical implant applications. We also demonstrate that the micron scale intra-strut porosities can be exploited to allow infiltration of bioactive materials using a novel bioactive silica-polymer composite, resulting in a metal-bioactive silica-polymer composite. © 2010 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4596-4604
    Number of pages8
    JournalActa Biomaterialia
    Volume6
    Issue number12
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010

    Keywords

    • Biomedical implants
    • Hierarchical titanium foams
    • Molten salt electrolysis
    • Spinal fusion
    • X-ray microtomography

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