Biomimetic Functionally Graded Materials: Synthesis by Impeller-Dry-Blending
Functionally graded materials (FGMs) can be found naturally in many biological structures, for example bamboo and the mollusc shell. They are defined as having a compositional or microstructural gradient, for example the gradation in fibre content in bamboo stems. A continuous bulk functionally graded material has the potential to be an ideal orthopaedic implant for load bearing applications. Due to the fabrication complexities involved in the production of these continuous bulk functionally graded materials, commercialisation and fabrication are still proving to be a challenge to researchers worldwide. This paper presents an overview of the redesigned novel commercially viable process known as the Impeller-Dry-Blending (IDB) process. Results presented in this paper of fabricated functionally graded materials illustrate the potential of IDB to produce continuous bulk functionally graded materials consisting of either compositional or porosity concentration changes. The successful fabrication of these continuous bulk functionally graded materials at such a low cost clearly demonstrates the commercial viability of the IDB process.
D.T. Chavara et al., "Biomimetic Functionally Graded Materials: Synthesis by Impeller-Dry-Blending", Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering, Vol. 3, pp. 37-49, 2009