Bioactive glasses have wide biomedical applications in bone restoration and repair, and as coatings for hip and teeth implants. The National Science Foundation has awarded $230,000 to Jincheng Du, assistant professor of materials science and engineering in the College of Engineering, to study this type of bioactive materials.
Du will combine atomistic simulations and neutron and X-ray diffraction characterization to investigate the complex structure of bioactive glasses and their dissolution mechanism in aqueous environment.
The investigation in this project will provide more reliable structure models, and mechanistic understanding of dissolution of bioactive glasses for biomedical applications from bone repair to implant coatings to tissue engineering.
"This is an exciting opportunity to attack the scientifically difficult, but technologically important problem of multi-component bioglass structures," Du says. "An innovative methodology based on a combination of experiments and mathematical simulations will be used to obtain new insights into the structure and bioactivity relationship of these biomaterials. The project will also train our students how to combine the strength of simulations and experiments in attacking challenging materials science problems."