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Keywords:

  • electrospinning;
  • fibers;
  • theory and modeling

ABSTRACT

A novel double-nozzle air-jet electrospinning apparatus was developed to fabricate nanofibers on a large scale. The distribution of the electric field at different nozzle distances was simulated to analyze the jet path, productivity, and deposition area of nanofiber webs and the nanofiber morphology. Our experiments showed that the bubbles usually ruptured intermittently on the top surface of the two nozzles and the jets traveled in a straight path with a high initial velocity. A continuous and even thickness of the nanofiber webs were obtained when the nozzle distances was less than 55 mm. At nozzle distances of 55 mm, the received fibers were thin with the lowest standard deviation. Experimental parameters involving the applied voltage, collecting distance, and air flow rate were also investigated to analyze the nanofiber morphology at a nozzle distance of 55 mm. The results show that the nanofibers presented a finer and thinner diameter at an applied voltage of 36 kV, a collecting distance of 18 cm, and an air flow rate of 800 mL/min. The nanofiber production of this setup increased to nearly 70 times that with a single-needle electrospinning setup. On the basis of the principle of this air-jet electrospinning setup, various arrangements of multinozzle electrospinning setups could be designed for higher throughput of nanofibers. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci., 2014, 131, 40040.