Special Issue "Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2021.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Carmen García-Payo
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Structure of Matter, Thermal Physics and Electronics, Faculty of Physics, University Complutense of Madrid, Avda. Complutense s/n, 28040, Madrid, Spain
Interests: nanofibrous membranes; thin film composite membrane; wastewater; desalination; brine solutions; membrane distillation; forward osmosis; microfiltration; nanofiltration
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

I have been asked by the Editor of Nanomaterials (MDPI) to coordinate a Special Issue entitled “Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites”.

This Special Issue is motivated by the observed growing interests on the design, fabrication, modification, and application of electrospun nanofibers and nanocomposites. Electrospinning technology has been widely used in the preparation of a wide range of nanoscale fibers for applications such as high-strength composite materials, nanoelectronics, sensors, biomedical application, drug delivery, food packaging, catalysis, membrane filtration, and energy applications (energy conversion/storage).

The rapidly developing technique of electrospinning has gained a surging research interest since its reinvention in 1990s due to its capability of yielding continuous fibers with diameters down to the nanometer scale, from a single needle spinning process to coaxial needle, multi-needle or the advanced bubble spinning technique. Electrospun nanofibers have comprehensive advantages such as continuity, diverse material choice, controlled diameter/structure, possible alignment/assembly, three-dimensional (3D) fibrous structures, mass production capability and can also be used as a platform for multifunctional, hierarchically organized nanocomposite.

In general, this Special Issue is oriented toward all types of nanofibers and nanocomposites materials, fabrication, characterization and modifications, innovations in materials, and improvements in electrospinning technology and process control to allow consistent production of nanofiber mats, and advanced multiple functionalities (physical, chemical, and biological functionalities) in order to obtain novel nanofiber and nanocomposite materials.

Considering your prominent contribution in this interesting research field, I would like to cordially invite you to submit a paper to this Special Issue through the webpage of the journal (S.I. Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites). The manuscript should be submitted online before 31 March 2021. The submitted manuscripts will then be fast-track reviewed. I would very much appreciate it if you could inform me of your interest in a paper contribution at your earliest convenience. Full papers, communications, and reviews are all welcome.

Prof. Dr. Carmen García-Payo
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Nanomaterials is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Electrospinning
  • Nanofiber
  • Nanocomposite
  • Hollow nanofiber/nanotube
  • Surface modification
  • Electrospinning process parameters
  • Hybrid composites
  • Functional composites
  • Smart materials

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Electrospun PCL/PGS Composite Fibers Incorporating Bioactive Glass Particles for Soft Tissue Engineering Applications
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(5), 978; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050978 - 19 May 2020
Abstract
Poly(glycerol-sebacate) (PGS) and poly(epsilon caprolactone) (PCL) have been widely investigated for biomedical applications in combination with the electrospinning process. Among others, one advantage of this blend is its suitability to be processed with benign solvents for electrospinning. In this work, the suitability of [...] Read more.
Poly(glycerol-sebacate) (PGS) and poly(epsilon caprolactone) (PCL) have been widely investigated for biomedical applications in combination with the electrospinning process. Among others, one advantage of this blend is its suitability to be processed with benign solvents for electrospinning. In this work, the suitability of PGS/PCL polymers for the fabrication of composite fibers incorporating bioactive glass (BG) particles was investigated. Composite electrospun fibers containing silicate or borosilicate glass particles (13-93 and 13-93BS, respectively) were obtained and characterized. Neat PCL and PCL composite electrospun fibers were used as control to investigate the possible effect of the presence of PGS and the influence of the bioactive glass particles. In fact, with the addition of PGS an increase in the average fiber diameter was observed, while in all the composite fibers, the presence of BG particles induced an increase in the fiber diameter distribution, without changing significantly the average fiber diameter. Results confirmed that the blended fibers are hydrophilic, while the addition of BG particles does not affect fiber wettability. Degradation test and acellular bioactivity test highlight the release of the BG particles from all composite fibers, relevant for all applications related to therapeutic ion release, i.e., wound healing. Because of weak interface between the incorporated BG particles and the polymeric fibers, mechanical properties were not improved in the composite fibers. Promising results were obtained from preliminary biological tests for potential use of the developed mats for soft tissue engineering applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites)
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Open AccessArticle
Synthesis of TiO2/WO3 Composite Nanofibers by a Water-Based Electrospinning Process and Their Application in Photocatalysis
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(5), 882; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050882 - 02 May 2020
Abstract
TiO2/WO3 nanofibers were prepared in a one-step process by electrospinning. Titanium(IV) bis(ammonium lactato)dihydroxide (TiBALDH) and ammonium metatungstate (AMT) were used as water-soluble Ti and W precursors, respectively. Polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) and varying ratios of TiBALDH and AMT were dissolved in a [...] Read more.
TiO2/WO3 nanofibers were prepared in a one-step process by electrospinning. Titanium(IV) bis(ammonium lactato)dihydroxide (TiBALDH) and ammonium metatungstate (AMT) were used as water-soluble Ti and W precursors, respectively. Polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) and varying ratios of TiBALDH and AMT were dissolved in a mixture of H2O, EtOH and CH3COOH. The as-spun fibers were then heated in air at 1 °C min−1 until 600 °C to form TiO2/WO3 composite nanofibers. Fiber characterization was done using TG/DTA, SEM–EDX, FTIR, XRD, and Raman. The annealed composite nanofibers had a diameter range of 130–1940 nm, and the results showed a growth in the fiber diameter with an increasing amount of WO3. The photocatalytic property of the fibers was also checked for methyl orange bleaching in visible and UV light. In visible light, the photocatalytic activity increased with an increase in the ratio of AMT, while 50% TiBALDH composite fibers showed the highest activity among the as-prepared fibers in UV light. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites)
Open AccessArticle
A General Protocol for Electrospun Non-Woven Fabrics of Dialdehyde Cellulose and Poly(Vinyl Alcohol)
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(4), 671; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10040671 - 02 Apr 2020
Abstract
In the past two decades, research on electrospinning has boomed due to its advantages of simple process, small fiber diameter, and special physical and chemical properties. The electrospun fibers are collected in a non-woven state in most cases (electrospun non-woven fabrics, ESNWs), which [...] Read more.
In the past two decades, research on electrospinning has boomed due to its advantages of simple process, small fiber diameter, and special physical and chemical properties. The electrospun fibers are collected in a non-woven state in most cases (electrospun non-woven fabrics, ESNWs), which renders the electrospinning method an optimum approach for non-woven fabric manufacturing on the nano-scale. The present study establishes a convenient preparation procedure for converting water-soluble dialdehyde cellulose (DAC) into DAC-based electrospun non-woven fabrics (ESNWs) reinforced with poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA). The aldehyde content, which was quantified by colorimetry using Schiff’s reagent, was 11.1 mmol per gram of DAC, which corresponds to a conversion yield of ca. 90%. DAC is fully water-soluble at room temperature between 10 and 30 wt%, and aqueous solutions turn into hydrogels within 24 h. To overcome gelation, NaHSO3, which forms bisulfite adducts with aldehyde functions, was added to the DAC and its concentration was optimized at 1 wt%. The electrospun (ES) dope containing 5 wt% DAC, 5 wt% PVA, and 1 wt% NaHSO3 in an aqueous solution was successfully transformed into ESNW, with an average fiber diameter of 345 ± 43 nm. Post-spinning treatment with excess hexamethylene diisocyanate was performed to insolubilize the ESNW materials. The occurrence of this chemical conversion was confirmed by energy-dispersive X-ray elemental analysis and vibrational spectra. The cross-linked DAC/PVA ESNW retained its thin fiber network upon soaking in distilled water, increasing the average fiber diameter to 424 ± 95 nm. This suggests that DAC/PVA-ESNWs will be applicable for incorporation or immobilization of biologically active substances. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites)
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Open AccessArticle
Multi-layer Scaffolds of Poly(caprolactone), Poly(glycerol sebacate) and Bioactive Glasses Manufactured by Combined 3D Printing and Electrospinning
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(4), 626; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10040626 - 28 Mar 2020
Abstract
Three-dimensional (3D) printing has been combined with electrospinning to manufacture multi-layered polymer/glass scaffolds that possess multi-scale porosity, are mechanically robust, release bioactive compounds, degrade at a controlled rate and are biocompatible. Fibrous mats of poly (caprolactone) (PCL) and poly (glycerol sebacate) (PGS) have [...] Read more.
Three-dimensional (3D) printing has been combined with electrospinning to manufacture multi-layered polymer/glass scaffolds that possess multi-scale porosity, are mechanically robust, release bioactive compounds, degrade at a controlled rate and are biocompatible. Fibrous mats of poly (caprolactone) (PCL) and poly (glycerol sebacate) (PGS) have been directly electrospun on one side of 3D-printed grids of PCL-PGS blends containing bioactive glasses (BGs). The excellent adhesion between layers has resulted in composite scaffolds with a Young’s modulus of 240–310 MPa, higher than that of 3D-printed grids (125–280 MPa, without the electrospun layer). The scaffolds degraded in vitro by releasing PGS and BGs, reaching a weight loss of ~14% after 56 days of incubation. Although the hydrolysis of PGS resulted in the acidification of the buffer medium (to a pH of 5.3–5.4), the release of alkaline ions from the BGs balanced that out and brought the pH back to 6.0. Cytotoxicity tests performed on fibroblasts showed that the PCL-PGS-BGs constructs were biocompatible, with cell viability of above 125% at day 2. This study demonstrates the fabrication of systems with engineered properties by the synergy of diverse technologies and materials (organic and inorganic) for potential applications in tendon and ligament tissue engineering. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Electrospun Nanofibers for Chemical Separation
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(5), 982; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050982 - 21 May 2020
Abstract
The separation and purification of specific chemicals from a mixture have become necessities for many environments, including agriculture, food science, and pharmaceutical and biomedical industries. Electrospun nanofiber membranes are promising materials for the separation of various species such as particles, biomolecules, dyes, and [...] Read more.
The separation and purification of specific chemicals from a mixture have become necessities for many environments, including agriculture, food science, and pharmaceutical and biomedical industries. Electrospun nanofiber membranes are promising materials for the separation of various species such as particles, biomolecules, dyes, and metals from liquids because of the combined properties of a large specific surface, light weight, high porosity, good connectivity, and tunable wettability. This paper reviews the recent progress in the design and fabrication of electrospun nanofibers for chemical separation. Different capture mechanisms including electrostatic, affinity, covalent bonding, chelation, and magnetic adsorption are explained and their distinct characteristics are highlighted. Finally, the challenges and future aspects of nanofibers for membrane applications are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Strategies to Improve Nanofibrous Scaffolds for Vascular Tissue Engineering
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(5), 887; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050887 - 05 May 2020
Abstract
The biofabrication of biomimetic scaffolds for tissue engineering applications is a field in continuous expansion. Of particular interest, nanofibrous scaffolds can mimic the mechanical and structural properties (e.g., collagen fibers) of the natural extracellular matrix (ECM) and have shown high potential in tissue [...] Read more.
The biofabrication of biomimetic scaffolds for tissue engineering applications is a field in continuous expansion. Of particular interest, nanofibrous scaffolds can mimic the mechanical and structural properties (e.g., collagen fibers) of the natural extracellular matrix (ECM) and have shown high potential in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. This review presents a general overview on nanofiber fabrication, with a specific focus on the design and application of electrospun nanofibrous scaffolds for vascular regeneration. The main nanofiber fabrication approaches, including self-assembly, thermally induced phase separation, and electrospinning are described. We also address nanofibrous scaffold design, including nanofiber structuring and surface functionalization, to improve scaffolds’ properties. Scaffolds for vascular regeneration with enhanced functional properties, given by providing cells with structural or bioactive cues, are discussed. Finally, current in vivo evaluation strategies of these nanofibrous scaffolds are introduced as the final step, before their potential application in clinical vascular tissue engineering can be further assessed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Electrospun Nanofibers and Nanocomposites)
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