Polymeric Complexes and Composites for Aerospace and Biomedical Applications
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Polymers, among metals and ceramics, are major solid materials which are widely used in all kinds of applications. Polymers are of particular interest because they can be tailored with desirable properties. Polymer-based complexes and composites, which contain both the polymers and other components such as metal oxide/salts, are playing a more and more important role in the material fields. Such complexes and composites may display the benefits of both the polymer and other materials, endowing them with excellent functionalities for targeted applications. In this dissertation, a great deal of research was conducted to synthesize novel polymers and build polymeric complexes and composites for biomedical and aerospace applications. In chapter 3, two methods were developed and optimized to fabricate sub-micron high-performance polymer particles which were subsequently used to coat onto functional carbon fibers via electrostatic interactions, for the purpose of fabricating carbon fiber reinforced polymer composites. In chapter 4, a novel Pluronic® P85-bearing penta-block copolymer was synthesized and formed complexes with magnetite. The complexes displayed non-toxicity to cells normally but were able to selectively kill cancer cells without killing normal cells when subjected to a low-frequency alternating current magnetic field. Such results demonstrated the potential of such polymeric complexes in cancer treatment. Chapter 5 described the synthesis of several ionic graft copolymers primarily bisphosphonate-containing polymers, and the fabrication of polymer-magnetite complexes. The in-depth investigation results indicated the capability of the complexes for potential drug delivery, imaging, and other biomedical applications. Chapter 6 described additional polymer synthesis and particle or complex fabrication for potential drug delivery and imaging, as well as radiation shielding.
- Doctoral Dissertations