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Nanoscale

Continuous electrospinning of polymer nanofibers of Nylon-6 using an atomic force microscope tip.


PMID 21713288

Abstract

An atomic force microscopy (AFM) probe is successfully utilized as an electrospinning tip for fabricating Nylon-6 nanofibers. The nanometre-size tip enabled controlled deposition of uniform polymeric nanofibers within a 1 cm diameter area. Nylon-6 nanofibers were continuously electrospun at a solution concentration as low as 1 wt% Nylon-6 in 1,1,1,3,3,3-hexafluoro-2-propanol (HFIP). Wide-angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) results of the AFM electrospun fibers indicated that the nanofibers predominantly display the meta-stable γ crystalline form suggesting rapid crystallization rate during the process. In addition to precise control over fiber deposition and diameter, some of the drawbacks of conventional electrospinning such as large volume of solutions and clogging of needles can be overcome using this AFM based electrospinning technique. Lastly, a comparison of electrospun fibers from syringe-needle based electrospinning and AFM probe-tip based electrospinning indicated significant morphological and microstructural differences in the case of AFM based electrospinning.

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181110
Nylon 6, pellets