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J Mater Sci Mater Med. 2000 Aug;11(8):523-31.

Morphological study of hydroxyapatite nanocrystal suspension.

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Plasma Technology Research Center (CRTP), Department of Chemical Engineering, Applied Science Faculty, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, (Québec) Canada, J1K 2R1.


Nanometer size hydroxyapatite (HA) crystals are prepared by a wet chemical precipitation method at different synthesis temperatures and with various reactant addition rates. The resulting aqueous suspensions are studied in terms of morphology (transmission electron microscope, specific surface area), phase (X-ray diffraction, electron diffraction and infrared spectroscopy) and rheological properties. This work shows that shape, size and specific surface area of the HA nanoparticles are very sensitive to the reaction temperature and also to the reactant addition rate. The measured pH at the end of synthesis, which is strongly linked with the reactant addition rate, is a key parameter which can be used to determine the purity of the synthesized HA nanocrystal and also for the stabilization (dispersion) of the suspension. HA nanoparticles synthesized at low temperature (T < 60 degrees C) are monocrystalline. A transition temperature (T=60 degrees C) can be defined as a limit for the synthesis of monocrystalline HA nanocrystals, above this critical temperature nanocrystals become polycrystalline. HA monocrystals adopt a needle shape and are oriented following the c-axis of the hexagonal HA structure. The as-synthesized suspension is then concentrated and the effect of a dispersing agent addition, which is needed to get a high solid/liquid ratio coupled with good flowability of the suspension, is also shown, because this suspension is used in the suspension plasma spraying process.


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