Abstract

This study focuses on the main factors determining the apparent porosity of porous bioceramics prepared using small organic foam spheres as the pore-making reagent, in order to determine the best technical parameters for preparing porous bioceramics. In every experiment, only one of these factors (the time of heating, the sintering temperature, the mass ratio between small organic foam spheres and beta-tricalcium phosphate (β-TCP) powder, and the rate of the temperature rise) was changed, while the others were kept constant. In each case the apparent porosity was tested and the relation between the specific variable and apparent porosity was observed. Finally, the optimum technical parameters were deduced. The apparent porosity shows an inverse linear relation to the time of heating and the sintering temperature, and is approximately proportional to the mass ratio between the small organic foam spheres and the β-TCP powder and the rate of temperature rise. These factors have important influences on the apparent porosity. The optimum conditions were: heating time (soak time) 120 min, sintering temperature 850°C, mass ratio 0.25, and a rate of temperature increase of 120°C h–1.

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