Effect of porosity reduction by compaction on compressive strength and microstructure of calcium phosphate cement

J. E. Barralet, T. Gaunt, A. J. Wright, Iain Ronald Gibson, J. C. Knowles

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159 Citations (Scopus)


Hydroxyapatite (HA) calcium phosphate cements (CPCs) are attractive materials for orthopedic applications because they can be molded into shape during implantation. However their low strength and brittle nature limits their potential applications to principally non-load-bearing applications. Little if any use has been made of the HA cement systems as manufacturing routes for preset HA bone grafts, which although not moldable pastes, are resorbable, unlike HA sintered ceramic. It is known that the strength of cements can be increased beyond that attainable from slurry systems by compaction, and this study investigates whether compaction significantly alters the specific surface area and pore-size distribution of CPC prepared according to the method of Brown and Chow. Compaction pressures of between 18 and 106 MPa were used to decrease the porosity from 50 to 31%, which resulted in an increase in the wet compressive strength from 4 to 37 MPa. The Weibull modulus was found to increase as porosity decreased; in addition the amount of porosity larger than the reactant particle size increased as porosity decreased. It is proposed that this was caused by a combination of voids created by the aqueous solvent used in fabrication and shrinkage that occurs on reaction. The specific surface area was unchanged by compaction. (C) 2001 John Wiley Sons, Inc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • calcium phosphate cement
  • hydroxyapatite
  • mechanical properties
  • microstructure
  • porosity
  • DRUG


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