Designing of Titanium/Polymer sandwich for biomedical application

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Heinz Palkowski, M.Sc. Gargi Shankar Nayak

The significant difference in the mechanical properties between the implants and the surrounding tissues results in stress shielding, which is detrimental for load-bearing tissues. Tuning the mechanical properties using sandwich materials, composed of two metallic skin sheets and a polymer core, has the potential to be an interesting alternative in these aspects. However, in industrial applications, where these systems are generally used, epoxy resins are applied as adhesives to stick the polymer core to metal skin sheets which are toxic by nature.
A joint collaboration (DFG PA 837/44-1) between IMET and IPCMS, Strasbourg, led to the development of a novel approach to fabricate resin-free biomedical sandwich using “grafting from” method, where grafted polymer is used as an adhesive to achieve a proper bonding between polymer core (PMMA) and metal skins (Ti). This is the basis for the actual research project in collaboration between IMET, IPCMS and CSPBAT (Paris), which involves designing of next-generation sandwich implant materials via fabrication of sandwich, shaping in desired shape, performing feasibility analysis of sandwich in in vivo and in vitro environment along with modelling and simulation of the whole process.