Location: Bioproduct Chemistry and Engineering Research
Title: Electrospinning of Polyaniline/Poly(Lactic Acid) Ultrathin Fibers: Process and Statistical Modeling using a Non-Gaussian Approach
Submitted to: Marcomolecular Theory and Simulations
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 12, 2009
Publication Date: September 4, 2009
Citation: Picciani, P.H., Soares, B.G., Medeiros, E.S., De Siyza, F.G., Wood, D.F., Orts, W.J., Mattoso, L.H. 2009. Electrospinning of Polyaniline/Poly(Lactic Acid) Ultrathin Fibers: Process and Statistical Modeling using a Non-Gaussian Approach. Macromolecular Theory and Simululations. 18:528–536.
Interpretive Summary: Electrospinning is a simple and versatile technique that produces micro- and nano-structured polymer materials. The polymer materials can be used as filtration membranes, drug release systems, wound dressings, engineered tissues, protective clothing, sensors, and other composite materials. Conductive nanofibers made by electrospinning have enhanced properties that are more versatile and allows their usage in optics, electronics, biomedical materials, protective clothing, charge storage devices, sensors and actuators. Polyaniline is one of the most technologically promising precursors for electrospinning because of its chemistry, stability and low cost. In this study, we develop methods for making electrospun conductive fibers with very small diameters in order to further enhance its properties in composite materials.
Fibers of poly(lactic acid) (PLA) blended with p-toluenesulfonic acid-doped polyaniline, PAni.TSA, were obtained by lectrospinning, following a factorial design which was used mainly to study the effect of four process parameters (PLA solution concentration, PAni solution concentration, applied voltage, and flow rate) on fiber diameter. Due to the non-Gaussian spread of the fiber diameters, probability density functions (PDF’s) were used to describe them, and the main effect analysis was performed considering the most representative values of these PDF’s. This study suggests that themain factorwhich governs the fiber dimension is the concentration of the PAni solution and its synergy with the others factors. Furthermore, in spite of the high complexity of the electrospinning process, the statistical model was able to describe the process with 95% confidence, therefore enabling one to precisely predict fiber diameter. Nanofiber formation was simulated using the results of the experimental design and validation tests were performed to minimize the fiber diameter.