Quaternary phosphate-based glasses in the P2O5–CaO–Na2O–TiO2 system with a fixed P2O5 and CaO content of 40 and 25 mol% respectively have been successfully synthesised via sol–gel method and bulk, transparent samples were obtained. The structure, elemental proportion, and thermal properties of stabilised sol–gel glasses have been characterised using X-ray diffraction (XRD), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), 31P nuclear magnetic resonance (31P NMR), titanium K-edge X-ray absorption near-edge structure (XANES), fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, and differential thermal analysis (DTA). The XRD results confirmed the amorphous nature for all stabilized sol–gel derived glasses. The EDX result shows the relatively low loss of phosphorus during the sol–gel process and Ti K-edge XANES confirmed titanium in the glass structure is in mainly six-fold coordination environment. The 31P NMR and FTIR results revealed that the glass structure consist of mainly Q1 and Q2 phosphate units and the Ti4+ cation was acting as a cross-linking between phosphate units. In addition DTA results confirmed a decrease in the glass transition and crystallisation temperature with increasing Na2O content. Ion release studies also demonstrated a decrease in degradation rates with increasing TiO2 content therefore supporting the use of these glasses for biomedical applications that require a degree of control over glass degradation. These sol–gel glasses also offer the potential to incorporate proactive molecules for drug delivery application due to the low synthesis temperature employed.
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- phosphate-based glass
- sol–gel synthesis