Paper number 737

POLYMER NANOCOMPOSITES FOR LOAD-BEARING MRI-COMPATIBLE IMPLANTS

Pierre-Franšois K÷ver, Heiko Zerlik, J÷rg Mayer, Karl-Ludwig Eckert and Erich Wintermantel

Biocompatible Materials Science and Engineering, Department of Materials
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, Wagistrasse 23, 8952 Schlieren, Switzerland

Summary Polymeric nanocomposites are potential materials for the manufacturing of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) compatible and repeatedly sterilisible minimally invasive surgical instruments, e.g. endoscopes. The low increase of viscosity due to the incorporation of nano-reinforcing agents into polymeric matrices makes nanocomposites suitable for injection moulding of thin-walled instruments. However, knowledge is scarce regarding the preparation of nanocomposites based on technical polymeric matrices such as polyetheretherketone (PEEK). The aim of this study was evaluate the potential of manufacturing nanocomposites by direct melt intercalation with shear. It has been demonstrated that this approach is a suitable method to compound nanocomposites of technical polymers. Tensile testing was used to compare the manufactured nanocomposites to fibre-reinforced microcomposites and showed that for low reinforcing agent fractions nano-reinforced composites can compete with fibre-reinforced composites.
Keywords nanocomposites, thermoplastics, polyetheretherketone, silicate, sodium-bentonite, mechanical properties.

Theme : Bio-composites

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