Numerical simulations to determine the influence of mould design on ice-templated scaffold structures

Anke Husmann, Kendell Pawelec, Clare Burdett, Serena Best, Ruth Cameron


In recent years, there has been a shift from traditional cell culture on two-dimensional substrates towards the use of three-dimensional scaffolds for tissue engineering. Ice-templating is a versatile tool to create porous scaffolds from collagen. Here we discuss specific considerations for the design of moulds to produce freeze dried collagen scaffolds with pore sizes of around 100µm, a range that is relevant to tissue engineering. A numerical model of heat conduction, implemented in COMSOL Multiphysics® version 5.0, calculated the temperature contour lines and heat flow vectors during cooling for a variety of mould geometries and materials. We show how temperature distribution within moulds determines the resulting pore structure of the scaffolds by regulating ice growth, and we validate our simulation against experimental results. These simulations are especially useful when working with moulds that contain volumes of more than 1cm in each direction.

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Journal of Biomedical Engineering and Informatics

ISSN 2377-9381(Print)  ISSN 2377-939X(Online)

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