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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2017, Article ID 8952390, 9 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/8952390
Research Article

Crystallinity of Electrospun and Centrifugal Spun Polycaprolactone Fibers: A Comparative Study

1Department of Nonwovens and Nanofibrous Materials, Faculty of Textile Engineering, Technical University of Liberec, Studentska 2, 46117 Liberec 1, Czech Republic
2Department of Polymer Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Muegyetem Rkp. 3, T. Bldg. III, Budapest 1111, Hungary
3MTA–BME Research Group for Composite Science and Technology, Muegyetem Rkp. 3, Budapest 1111, Hungary

Correspondence should be addressed to Eva Kuzelova Kostakova; zc.lut@avokatsok.ave

Received 27 September 2016; Accepted 1 February 2017; Published 5 March 2017

Academic Editor: Russell E. Gorga

Copyright © 2017 Eva Kuzelova Kostakova et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Crystalline properties of semicrystalline polymers are very important parameters that can influence the application area. The internal structure, like the mentioned crystalline properties, of polymers can be influenced by the production technology itself and by changing technology parameters. The present work is devoted to testing of electrospun and centrifugal spun fibrous and nanofibrous materials and compare them to foils and granules made from the same raw polymer. The test setup reveals the structural differences caused by the production technology. Effects of average molecular weight are also exhibited. The applied biodegradable and biocompatible polymer is polycaprolactone (PCL) as it is a widespread material for medical purposes. The crystallinity of PCL has significant effect on rate of degradation that is an important parameter for a biodegradable material and determines the applicability. The results of differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) showed that, at the degree of crystallinity, there is a minor difference between the electrospun and centrifugal spun fibrous materials. However, the significant influence of polymer molecular weight was exhibited. The morphology of the fibrous materials, represented by fiber diameter, also did not demonstrate any connection to final measured crystallinity degree of the tested materials.