Bone implants have been increasingly used to repair and replace the host bones. One promising approach is creating three-dimensional (3D) porous cellular structures that provide suitable microenvironments to achieve the required integration and support under loading conditions.
Both porosity and pore size have a direct influence on their functionalities for biomedical applications. Besides the intrinsic material properties of the polymers, the internal architecture of a cellular structure has a significant effect on its mechanical and biological behaviour.
Improved specific mechanical properties have been observed in non-stochastic geometries. The advances in additive manufacturing technologies make it possible to rapidly create cellular structures based on 3D computer-aided design (CAD) models with accuracy and reproducibility.
Recently, open-porous cellular structures were fabricated using 3D printing techniques. The mechanical and biological behavior of four 3D internal structures were investigated, including:
- pillar octahedral
- truncated octahedral.
We found that the pillar octahedral shape has greater stiffness and strength under compression, shear and torsion as well as an increased rate of pre-osteoblastic cell growth.
We believe bone implants can be fabricated using 3D printing techniques and their mechanical and biological performance can be tailored by modifying the internal architectures. You will be involved in either experimental investigations or numerical modelling to explore this theory.
This work will present novel methods for optimising the mechanical and biomedical properties of implants and scaffolds for tissue engineering. We believe the outcomes will benefit the design and fabrication of personalised implants.
As a research student you will have the opportunity for training in materials science and engineering, biotechnology and advanced manufacturing.
Skills and experience
To be considered for this research project, you're expected to have a general background in any of the following disciplines:
- mechanical engineering
- materials science
You'll also need to be interested in conducting either experimental investigations or numerical modelling.
You may be able to apply for a research scholarship in our annual scholarship round.
Contact the supervisor for more information.