Senior Design 2021 – Mechanical Engineering Team 55
Christopher LeMay Zachary Ohayan Anthony Rivera
Dr. David M. Pierce
Design and Fabrication of Cartilage Specimen for Characterization
The Interdisciplinary Mechanics Laboratory (imLab) combines imaging, experimental testing, and computational modeling across disciplines to solve challenging, practical problems in biomechanics and engineering related to soft tissues, new engineered materials, and applications. The research group led by Associate Professor David M. Pierce is interested in understanding and predicting the mechanics of soft tissues and engineering materials. The first objective of this project was to find the optimum shape and size of a cartilage and collagen network to perform tensile tests. Our team used analysis through FEBio to determine the optimized specimen dimensions for testing. Additionally, we needed to improve the ability to produce sample sizes with these exact dimensions in a very accurate and efficient manner. To accomplish this, we were tasked with designing a tool that would speed up the specimen cutting process while also making the cuts more accurate. Using the identified dimensions from FEBio as a guide, we modeled multiple cutting tool prototypes. After preliminary testing, the approximate design we determined to be most efficient, precise, and accurate had a gauge length of 3.5mm, a radius of 3mm, a clamp width of 4.5mm, a clamp height of 6mm, a gauge width of 1.5mm and a thickness of 0.1mm.