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research-article

A Novel Small-Specimen Planar Biaxial Testing System with Full In-Plane Deformation Control

[+] Author and Article Information
Samuel Potter

Center for Cardiovascular Simulation, Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 240 East 24th Street, Austin TX 78731
stpotter@utexas.edu

Jordan Graves

Center for Cardiovascular Simulation, Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 240 East 24th Street, Austin TX 78731
j_graves@utexas.edu

Borys Drach

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM 88003
borys@nmsu.edu

Thomas Leahy

Center for Cardiovascular Simulation, Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 240 East 24th Street, Austin TX 78731
thomasleahy.apps@gmail.com

Christopher Hammell

Center for Cardiovascular Simulation, Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 240 East 24th Street, Austin TX 78731
chammel4@gmail.com

Yuan Feng

Center for Cardiovascular Simulation, Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 240 East 24th Street, Austin TX 78731
aaronfeng85@icloud.com

Aaron Baker

Center for Cardiovascular Simulation, Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 240 East 24th Street, Austin TX 78731
abbaker@austin.utexas.edu

Michael Sacks

Center for Cardiovascular Simulation, Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 240 East 24th Street, Austin TX 78731
msacks@ices.utexas.edu

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4038779 History: Received June 01, 2017; Revised December 11, 2017

Abstract

Simulations of soft tissues rely on constitutive models whose form must be generated by in-vitro experimentation. For membranes and thin specimens, planar biaxial testing systems have been used, but remain limited in their ability to fully prescribe in-plane F2D, in the homogeneity of the applied F2D and in the size of specimens they can accommodate. We have developed a novel planar biaxial testing device that overcomes these difficulties and is capable of full control of the in-plane deformation gradient tensor F2D and of testing specimens as small as ~4 mm x 4 mm. Individual actuation of specimen attachment points combined with a robust, real-time feedback control capable of dealing with material response uncertainties enables the device to enforce any arbitrary F2D with a high degree of accuracy and deformation homogeneity. Results from device validation trials and example tissues illustrate the ability of the device to gather data needed for developing and validating constitutive laws of biomaterials. These capabilities highlight the potential of the device to serve as a platform for verifying the results of inverse models and for conducting robust, controlled investigation into the biomechanics of murine vascular tissues.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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