Nanofiber technology is an area attracting the attention of many research branches. Nanofibers provide connections between the nano- and macro-world because their diameters are in the order of nanometres, while their lengths can run into hundreds of metres or more. Nanofibers must have a fiber diameter of less than 100 nm, although the commercial sector allows an upper fiber diameter limit of 300 nm or even 500 nm.
Fields adopting electrospinning in recent years:
Health Care (targeted drug delivery, artificial joints, tissue replacements,)
Chemical Industry (nanotubes, nanocomposites, cosmetic creams)
Textile Industry (novel apparels, hydrophobic and non-soiling fabrics)
Environment (filtration, biodegradation, removal of impurities, marking of food)
Electronics (storage devices, spintronics, bioelectronics, quantum electronics)
The electrostatic spinning of nanofibers has several advantages over bulk materials, i.e. in particular the huge surface-to-volume ratio, very high porosity and improved physico-chemical properties.
Of the various process methods (drawing, phase separation, self-alignment, etc.), electrospinning is the only viable method that can be further developed for the mass production of nanofibers from various polymers.
Nanofibers are interesting material for biomedical applications for many reasons. Compared with most materials, the surface area of nanofibers, allowing for the adhesion of cells, proteins and drugs, is much larger.
Application of nanofibers in biomedicine:
Tissue Engineering (replacement of damaged tissues including the skin, bones, cartilage, lymph nodes, blood vessels, muscles, and other tissues)
Drug Delivery (biodegradable or non-biodegradable nanomaterials can be used to control the release of drugs either through diffusion alone or through diffusion and degradation)
Scaffolds (sufficient surface and various surface chemical properties facilitating cell adhesion, growth, migration and differentiation can be achieved using biocompatible nanofibers)
Wound Healing (novel dressing materials made of spun biopolymers contain various active components beneficial for wound healing with fiber segment sizes ranging from tens of nanometres to several microns)
Many in vitro studies of nanofiber wound healing bandages, scaffolds and drug carriers have shown that nanofiber materials outperform their micro or macro counterparts even when they are composed of the same materials. The properties of nanofiber layers, such as porosity, can generally be adapted.