Art in the F ² Lab

In engineering, art is often overlooked. Bone is a marvelous natural material that has been engineered over millions of years. Bioinspired designs and biology itself can serve as a reminder that even in, and especially in, engineering, art has a place.

“Bone” to Climb

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Osteonal Night

Some of the most important crack resistance qualities of cortical bone occur at the micrometer length-scale. We are characterizing them using Synchrotron radiation micro-computed tomography (SRuT). This technique provides 3D structural information at micron level such as size of osteon’s Haversian canal and osteocyte lacunae. Following mechanical testing, a 3D image of crack growth from a notch can also be visualize. Using this technique, we investigate how biological changes caused by age, disease, treatment, etc. affect the microstructural features and their interaction with the crack growth, and in turn, how these factors alter the fracture resistance.