High strain rate response of rabbit femur bones

Vasanth Chakravarthy Shunmugasamy, Nikhil Gupta, Paulo G. Coelho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Strain rate dependence of the mechanical response of hard tissues has led to a keen interest in their dynamic properties. The current study attempts to understand the high strain rate characteristics of rabbit femur bones. The testing was conducted using a split-Hopkinson pressure bar equipped with a high speed imaging system to capture the fracture patterns. The bones were also characterized under quasi-static compression to enable comparison with the high strain rate results. The quasi-static compressive moduli of the epiphyseal and diaphyseal regions were measured to be in the range of 2-3 and 5-7. GPa, respectively. Under high strain rate loading conditions the modulus is observed to increase with strain rate and attains values as high as 15. GPa for epiphyseal and 30. GPa for diaphyseal regions of the femur. The strength at high strain rate was measured to be about twice the quasi-static strength value. A large number of small cracks initiated on the specimen surface close to the incident bar. Coalescence of crack branches leading to fewer large cracks resulted in specimen fragmentation. In comparison, the quasi-static failure was due to shear cracking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3044-3050
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Issue number15
StatePublished - Nov 16 2010


  • Fracture
  • High strain rate
  • Mechanical properties
  • Rabbit femur

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation


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