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Hierarchically Structured Electrospun Fibers
US Army Research Laboratory, Weapons and Materials Research Directorate, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21005, USA
Received: 11 October 2012; in revised form: 3 December 2012 / Accepted: 25 December 2012 / Published: 7 January 2013
Abstract: Traditional electrospun nanofibers have a myriad of applications ranging from scaffolds for tissue engineering to components of biosensors and energy harvesting devices. The generally smooth one-dimensional structure of the fibers has stood as a limitation to several interesting novel applications. Control of fiber diameter, porosity and collector geometry will be briefly discussed, as will more traditional methods for controlling fiber morphology and fiber mat architecture. The remainder of the review will focus on new techniques to prepare hierarchically structured fibers. Fibers with hierarchical primary structures—including helical, buckled, and beads-on-a-string fibers, as well as fibers with secondary structures, such as nanopores, nanopillars, nanorods, and internally structured fibers and their applications—will be discussed. These new materials with helical/buckled morphology are expected to possess unique optical and mechanical properties with possible applications for negative refractive index materials, highly stretchable/high-tensile-strength materials, and components in microelectromechanical devices. Core-shell type fibers enable a much wider variety of materials to be electrospun and are expected to be widely applied in the sensing, drug delivery/controlled release fields, and in the encapsulation of live cells for biological applications. Materials with a hierarchical secondary structure are expected to provide new superhydrophobic and self-cleaning materials.
Keywords: electrospinning; hierarchical; core-shell; helical; nanoporous; patterned; nanofiber
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Cite This Article
MDPI and ACS Style
Zander, N.E. Hierarchically Structured Electrospun Fibers. Polymers 2013, 5, 19-44.
Zander NE. Hierarchically Structured Electrospun Fibers. Polymers. 2013; 5(1):19-44.
Zander, Nicole E. 2013. "Hierarchically Structured Electrospun Fibers." Polymers 5, no. 1: 19-44.