Hydroxyapatite crystals grown on a cellulose matrix using titanium alkoxide as a coupling agent
Hydroxyapatite (HAp) crystals were grown on the surface of a cellulose matrix previously modified using titanium isopropoxide (TIPO). This modification provides the appropriate labile chemical groups to grow HAp: the primary hydroxyl of cellulose, the most reactive of the three groups, has not enough reactivity to grow HAp. However, TIPO is a very reactive alkoxide that can react with the primary hydroxyl to produce three new labile hydroxyl groups to grow HAp crystals. The resulting hybrid material was characterized by SEM, EDS, FTIR, ICP and X-ray diffraction. Numerical calculations were used to understand the chemical reactions involved in the growth of HAp on cellulose.