Fu, Xin (2012)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.
Surface modification of polymers has long been known in polymer chemistry but has not yet been widely applied to biomaterials. A newly developed active screen plasma technology has a potential to treat such non-conductive materials as polymers to improve their surface properties since this is a low-temparature, low cost and environmentally friendly plasma process. in this project, three kind of polymeric materials, ultra high molecular weight polyethylene, polyurethane and polycaprolacton, were surface modified using active screen plasma nitriding technology.
The results demonstrated that it is feasible to conduct plasma surfae modification of polymeric materials using the newly developed active-screen plasma technology without causing any etching, significant sputtering or other surface damage.
Changes in chemical composition and structure have been found an all three polymeric materials' surface following active screen plasma surface treatments. Crosslinking or/and new functional groups are formed on the topmost surface layer after the treatment.
Along with changes in surface morphologies and structural, the wettability of the surface of all three polymeric materials can also be effectively improved by the active screen plasma nitriding treatments.
Active-screen plasma nitriding technique is an effective and practical method to improve osteoblast cell adhesion and spreading on all three polymeric materials' surface.
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