Effect of Specimen Thickness on Fracture Toughness of Bovine Patellar Cartilage

D. J. Adams, K. M. Brosche, Jack L Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Fracture toughness and crack tip opening angle were measured for bovine patellar cartilage using modified single-edged notch specimens of two thicknesses. There was no difference in fracture toughness between thin (0.7 mm) versus relatively thick (2.7 mm) specimens, but the crack tip opening angle at initiation of crack propagation was larger for the thin specimens (106 deg) than for the thick specimens (70 deg). Fracture toughness of the bovine patellar cartilage (1.03 kJ/m2) was not statistically different than that reported previously of canine patellar cartilage (1.07 kJ/m2) employing the same methods. Large variation in measurements for both bovine and canine cartilage are in attributable to variation between individual animals, and are consistent with variation in other mechanical property measurements for articular cartilage. The observed reduction in crack tip opening angle with increased specimen thickness is consistent with behavior of some engineering materials, and demonstrates that specimen thickness influences fracture behavior for bovine patellar cartilage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)927-929
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of biomechanical engineering
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2003


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