Mixed-mode fracture of human cortical bone

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journal

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Author(s)

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5877-5884
Journal / PublicationBiomaterials
Volume30
Issue number29
Online published1 Jul 2009
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2009
Externally publishedYes

Abstract

Although the mode I (tensile opening) fracture toughness has been the focus of most fracture mechanics studies of human cortical bone, bones in vivo are invariably loaded multiaxially. Consequently, an understanding of mixed-mode fracture is necessary to determine whether a mode I fracture toughness test provides the appropriate information to accurately quantify fracture risk. In this study, we examine the mixed-mode fracture of human cortical bone by characterizing the crack-initiation fracture toughness in the transverse (breaking) orientation under combined mode I (tensile opening) plus mode II (shear) loading using samples loaded in symmetric and asymmetric four-point bending. Whereas in most structural materials, the fracture toughness is increased with increasing mode-mixity (i.e., where the shear loading component gets larger), in the transverse orientation of bone the situation is quite different. Indeed, the competition between the maximum applied mechanical mixed-mode driving force and the weakest microstructural paths in bone results in a behavior that is distinctly different to most homogeneous brittle materials. Specifically, in this orientation, the fracture toughness of bone is markedly decreased with increasing mode-mixity.

Research Area(s)

  • Fracture mechanisms, Fracture toughness, Human cortical bone, Mixed-mode fracture

Citation Format(s)

Mixed-mode fracture of human cortical bone. / Zimmermann, Elizabeth A.; Launey, Maximilien E.; Barth, Holly D.; Ritchie, Robert O.

In: Biomaterials, Vol. 30, No. 29, 10.2009, p. 5877-5884.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journal