Microscopy Study of Morphology of Electrospun Fiber-MOF Composites with Secondary Growth

Mitchell R. Armstrong, Bohan Shan, Bin Mu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Microscopy studies were performed over a series of metal-organic-framework (MOF) imbedded electrospun fibers. Analysis of as-spun fibers revealed five different MOF particle-fiber imbedded morphologies including complete particle encasement, over-filled, surface-bound, welded, and agglomerated. To mitigate issues with fiber breakup during electrospinning (ES) due to MOF particle incorporation, secondary growth method was used. Secondary growth was performed on both Matrimid and polysulfone fibers impregnated with a MOF, ZIF-8, in either water or methanol solvents. Results show that when water was used, crystal formation was limited to formation on the top layer of the fiber mat due to hydrophobicity. When methanol was used in place of water, MOF crystal growth occurred in a patchwise manner, where crystals grow across fibers and span the entire fiber mat. From this work, it was determined that successful secondary growth of MOF imbedded electrospun fibers can be accomplished when particles are either highly exposed along the fiber surface for adequate exposure to solvent, or the solvent used promotes reactant penetration into the polymer to allow access to the seeded MOF crystals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2457-2463
Number of pages7
JournalMRS Advances
Issue number46
StatePublished - 2017


  • Scanning electron microscopy (SEM)
  • crystal growth
  • porosity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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