Electrospinning is a method of electrostatically depositing polymer nanofibers onto an object by applying a high voltage to a liquid polymer solution. Using collection surfaces of various shapes and sizes as molds, this technology can produce standalone materials and devices, or can be used to coat nanofibers onto existing materials and devices. The diagram to the right shows a basic electrospinning setup.
Before electrospinning, an FDA-approved polymer is mixed with a solvent system to dissolve the polymer. By applying a high voltage to the polymer solution, the liquid polymer is agitated, generating a narrow polymer jet which rapidly accelerates toward the nearest grounded surface. As the microscopic jet of viscous polymer solution is drawn to the grounded surface, the solvent rapidly evaporates, allowing a solid layer of polymer nanofibers to deposit onto the collecting surface. The resulting electrospun materials (ESPs) have synergistic microstructural and biological benefits that hold numerous advantages over conventional woven and knitted textile materials being used in devices today.
While a simplified overview has been provided to describe our ESP technology, over a decade's worth of experimentation and development work has been carried out to advance our technology.