2009 SFB Workshop Presentation: Measurements of Medical Grade PEEK Using R-FTIR

    • Reference:
    • Jaekel DJ, Medel FJ, Kurtz SM. Validation of Crystallinity Measurements of Medical Grade PEEK Using Specular Reflectance FTIR-microscopy, Transactions of the Society for Biomaterials, 2009.
    • Keywords:
    • PEEK, CFR-PEEK, mechanical behavior, crystallinity
    • Permissions:
    • The PDF handout of the conference presentation is made available on with the permission of the authors.

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Characterizing the crystallinity in PEEK is critical, since it dictates the mechanical behavior of the polymer. Wide angle X-ray scattering (WAXS) has been typically employed for this purpose; yet, it is impractical for the measurement of some composite materials. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) has also been used but with limited accuracy. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) microscopy has been identified as a suitable method to measure the crystallinity of industrial grade PEEK, but its usefulness with medical grade PEEK remains unknown. By comparing FTIR, WAXS and DSC for a range of medical PEEK grades, we demonstrate that FTIR can detect changes in crystallinity due to annealing treatments and incorporation of carbon fibers or radiopaque compounds.