Polymer, Vol.49, No.10, 2387-2425, 2008
Electrospinning jets and polymer nanofibers
In electrospinning, polymer nanofibers are formed by the creation and elongation of an electrified fluid jet. The path of the jet is from a fluid surface that is often, but not necessarily constrained by an orifice, through a straight segment of a tapering cone, then through a series of successively smaller electrically driven bending coils, with each bending coil having turns of increasing radius, and finally solidifying into a continuous thin fiber. Control of the process produces fibers with nanometer scale diameters, along with various cross-sectional shapes, beads, branches and buckling coils or zigzags. Additions to the fluid being spun, such as chemical reagents, other polymers, dispersed particles, proteins, and viable cells, resulted in the inclusion of the added material along the nanofibers. Post-treatments of nanofibers, by conglutination, by vapor coating, by chemical treatment of the surfaces, and by thermal processing, broaden the usefulness of nanofibers. (c) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Keywords:drop;droplet shape;jet;Taylor cone;envelope cone;beads;buckling;interference colors;Doppler velocimeter;meniscus;straight segment;tapered segment;electrical bending instability;instabilities of jets;branching;solidification;collection;conglutination;ribbons;glints;encapsulation;hierarchical structures;spider silk;silk nanofibers;carbon nanofibers;ceramic;metal;coated nanofibers;polymer solutions;polymer melts;molten polymers;polymer fluids;non-Newtonian fluids;viscosity;charge transport;electrodes;fuel cells;carbon nanotubes;protein preservation;metal nanofibers;structures in interplanetary space;exfoliated clay;thernmphotovoltaic device