Fibre fabrics (non-wovens) consisting of fibres with diameters of less than one micrometre (nanofibres) can be produced with electrospinning. Fibres in the sub-micrometre range gain special properties, primarily dependent on their extremely high specific surface.
There are presently a number of different technical solutions for how nanofibre production with electrospinning can be performed. Common to all is that a polymer solution (5–20% dry content) is exposed to a strong electrical field that causes the thin polymer threads to elongate during simultaneous evaporation. The dry fibres are drawn to a collector and there form a thin fibre fabric.
In principle all polymers can be electrospun as long as a suitable solvent is available. Examples of applications where nanofibres are studied are in air and water filtering, sound absorption and bio-medicine (substrates for cell cultivation, controlled release of pharmaceuticals, etc.).
We have equipment for lab-scale production and knowledge of how the processes can be conducted on larger scales. Because the fibres are much too thin to be studied with common optical microscopes we often use electron microscopy to analyse the resulting fibres.
How can we help you?
We have many years of practical experience of electrospinning in its various forms and with different types of polymers and solvent systems. We can help you get started to find out if electrospun nanofibres can be a solution to your problem or provide valuable functionality.
Contact and more information
bengt.hagstrom [at] swerea.se