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Title:Fabrication and characterization of co-continuous elastomer-hydrogel composites
Author(s):Zhang, Qian
Advisor(s):Hutchens, Shelby B.
Department / Program:Mechanical Sci & Engineering
Discipline:Mechanical Engineering
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):elastomer-hydrogel composite
polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)
polyacrylamide hydrogel
water permeability
salt diffusivity
Abstract:The increasing demand of applications in polymer industry requires new or improved combinations of material properties, which cannot be satisfied by few polymers alone. There has therefore been scientific and industrial interest in mixing two different polymers together to make polymer blends. Of all possible polymer blend morphologies, co-continuous blends are of particular interest due to their unique property of possessing two continuous phases. In this research, a co-continuous structured elastomer-hydrogel composite is fabricated to combine the elasticity of elastomer and the permeability of hydrogel. The stretchable, water permeable composite can be used as a mechanically tunable molecular sieve in drug delivery and tissue engineering. Porous PEO-PDMS elastomer with interconnected microchannels is filled with polyacrylamide hydrogels via a microsphere-templating process. The configuration of the microstructure of the composite is observed and analyzed. Besides, the mechanical properties and diffusivity properties of the composite are experimentally characterized. In general, this research provides experimental bases for designing a new polymer blends of elastomer and hydrogel. It also aids in the creation of guidelines for the analysis of elastomer-hydrogel interactions.
Issue Date:2016-12-08
Rights Information:Copyright 2016 Qian Zhang
Date Available in IDEALS:2017-03-01
Date Deposited:2016-12

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