Basic knowledge and mechanical properties of hydrogels

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As a product in the field of polymer material testing, hydrogel is gradually being developed

As a product in the field of polymer material testing, hydrogel is gradually being developed and applied in tissue engineering, biomedicine, soft electronics and other industries due to its good biocompatibility, physicochemical properties, high water absorption, high water retention and other characteristics. Especially in terms of biomedical materials, hydrogels have been well used as drug carriers, tissue adhesives, wound excipients, etc.

1. What is a hydrogel

Hydrogel is a gel with water as the dispersion medium. It is a water-soluble polymer with a network cross-linked structure that introduces a part of hydrophobic groups and hydrophilic residues. The hydrophilic residues are combined with water molecules to connect water molecules in A cross-linked polymer in which hydrophobic residues swell with water in the interior of the network. As a material with a three-dimensional macromolecule network structure, hydrogels are soft, but can maintain a certain shape and absorb a large amount of water.

2. Application and classification of hydrogels

Relying on the material properties of high water absorption and high water retention, hydrogels are widely used in various fields, such as drought resistance in arid areas, facial masks in cosmetics, antipyretic and analgesic patches in medical clinics, and dew condensation prevention in buildings. agent, humidity control agent, water blocking agent in petrochemical industry, dehydrating agent for crude oil or refined oil, dust suppressant in mining industry, preservative and thickening agent in food, drug carrier in medical treatment, agricultural film in agriculture Wait. But it is worth noting that different application fields should choose different polymer raw materials to meet different application needs. According to different classification standards, hydrogels can be divided into the following types:

1. Network bonding

Depending on the network bonding, hydrogels can be divided into physical gels and chemical gels. Physical gel is formed by physical forces, such as electrostatic interaction, hydrogen bonding, chain entanglement, etc. This gel is non-permanent and can be transformed into a solution after heating, so it is also called a pseudo-gel or a pseudo-gel. Thermally reversible gel; and chemical gel is a three-dimensional network polymer formed by chemical bond cross-linking, which is permanent, also known as true gel.

2. Folding size and shape

Depending on the size and shape, hydrogels can be divided into macrogels and microgels (microspheres). ; Microgels (microspheres) also have micro-scale and nano-scale points.


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