Stay one step ahead: Full environmental control

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Climate control

Electrospinning evironmental control is critical for homogeneously and consistently producing electrospun products at all times. Remember that the environmental conditions vary significantly throughout the year depending on the season, which seriously affects the electrospinning process. To produce the same electrospun material (same morphology, properties, etc.) regardless of the location and the time of year, a high-performance climate control unit is required that is specifically designed for a particular evaporative process such as the electrospinning process.

At Fluidnatek, we always say that temperature is important but humidity is critical in the electrospinning process. In other words, electrospinning environmental control is essential when it comes to process consistency.

Polymers such as PCL, PEO or PU are rather sensitive to changes in environmental conditions, as are many others. Solvents also behave differently in the electrospinning process in response to changes in temperature and humidity in the atmosphere. Therefore, keeping the production chamber of an electrospinning machine climate-stable is essential in ensuring consistency and reproducibility at all times. 

Different climate control unit options designed specifically for the electrospinning process (which is an evaporative process with particular characteristics) are available for Fluidnatek machines, depending on the versatility and power required: from climate control units capable of heating-cooling and drying-humidifying that provide all degrees of freedom, to more limited and inexpensive ones that remain a good option for certain applications. Depending on their needs and budget, each user selects the option that best suits relating electrospinning enviroment control.

More specifically, the Fluidnatek Environmental Control Unit (ECU) option for our electrospinning machines makes it possible to heat-cool and dry-humidify the atmosphere in the machine chamber, thus providing adaptability and versatility for the user to move around the viable climate space (psychrometric chart) and reach the optimum temperature and relative humidity points for each process. In other words, full climate control. In addition, the Fluidnatek ECU comes equipped with filtering stages including a HEPA filter at the final air intake stage to provide an ultra-clean environment in the chamber of the electrospinning machine. Powerful, verastile and easy-to-maintain electrospinning environmental control.

As an example of the vital importance of climate control, the SEM images below show an electrospun material produced using PCL polymer, the same formula and similar process parameters (voltage, flow rate and spinning distance); the environmental variables, temperature and humidity variables have been optimised in the left-hand image, whereas the environmental variables have not been optimised with a climate control unit in the right-hand image, but have been processed with the environmental conditions of the laboratory at that time. As can be seen in the images, the fibre size, morphology, and type of structure of both electrospun materials differ significantly, despite having used the same polymer, formula, and process parameters (except for the environmental variables).