Ismael firstly graduated from the University of Navarra (Spain) with a degree in Industrial Engineering (2011). His first contact with the Materials Science and Metallurgy Department of the University of Cambridge was in 2011 when he worked as a summer student in the Composites and Coating group. After graduating he worked in industry as an R&D scientist for FMCG company. In 2013 he returned to academia and completed a Materials Engineer degree (University of Navarra, Spain). Currently Ismael is undertaking a PhD in the CCMM studying the degradation of polymer/ceramic composites for orthopaedic applications using a combined experimental and computational approach funded by Lucideon and “La Caixa” Europe programme.
Ismael is currently investigating the degradation of composite materials made of biodegradable polymeric matrix and calcium-based particles. The biodegradable polymers used as matrix are poly(alpha-hydroxy acids). These polymers have been widely investigated in orthopaedic applications. Their heterogeneous degradation profile brings some disadvantages. With the objective of mitigating those disadvantages calcium-based fillers, such as hydroxyapatite, tri-calcium phosphate or calcium carbonate, have been incorporated to the matrix to form a composite. Little is known about the mechanisms of degradation of these composite materials. Many factors, including polymer type, particle size distribution, spatial particle distribution and solubility of the particle affect this degradation profile. The interactions between the different factors are complex and need to be processed using computational tools. A full knowledge of the different factors that play a role and a thorough characterisation will allow the generation of a computational model that will deepen the understanding of the composites degradation.