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Low-Cost Advanced Hydrogels of Calcium Alginate/Carbon Nanofibers with Enhanced Water Diffusion and Compression Properties

Authors
  • Llorens-Gámez, Mar
  • Serrano-Aroca, Ángel1
  • 1 Facultad de Veterinaria y Ciencias Experimentales, Universidad Católica de Valencia San Vicente Mártir, C/Guillem de Castro 94, 46001 Valencia, Spain
Type
Published Article
Journal
Polymers
Publisher
MDPI AG
Publication Date
Apr 04, 2018
Volume
10
Issue
4
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3390/polym10040405
PMID: 30966440
PMCID: PMC6415267
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

A series of alginate films was synthesised with several calcium chloride cross-linker contents (from 3 to 18% w/w ) with and without a very low amount (0.1% w/w ) of carbon nanofibers (CNFs) in order to reduce the production costs as much as possible. The results of this study showed a very significant enhancement of liquid water diffusion and mechanical compressive modulus for high calcium chloride contents when this minuscule amount of CNFs is incorporated into calcium alginate hydrogels. These excellent results are attributed to a double cross-linking process, in which calcium cations are capable of cross-linking both alginate chains and CNFs creating a reinforced structure exhibiting ultrafast water diffusion through carbon nanochannels. Thus, these excellent results render these new alginate composites very promising for many bioengineering fields in need of low-cost advanced hydrogels with superior water diffusion and compression properties.

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