Publisher DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2011.0498
Title: Hierarchical flexural strength of enamel : transition from brittle to damage-tolerant behaviour
Language: English
Authors: Bechtle, Sabine 
Özcoban, Hüseyin 
Lilleodden, Erica 
Huber, Norbert  
Schreyer, Andreas 
Swain, Michael V. 
Schneider, Gerold A. 
Keywords: Biological materials; Dental enamel; Hierarchical structures; Mechanical properties
Issue Date: 26-Oct-2011
Publisher: Royal Society of London
Source: Journal of the Royal Society Interface 71 (9): 1265-1274 (2012)
Abstract (english): 
Hard, biological materials are generally hierarchically structured from the nano- to the macroscale in a somewhat self-similar manner consisting of mineral units surrounded by a soft protein shell. Considerable efforts are underway to mimic such materials because of their structurally optimized mechanical functionality of being hard and stiff as well as damage-tolerant. However, it is unclear how different hierarchical levels interact to achieve this performance. In this study, we consider dental enamel as a representative, biological hierarchical structure and determine its flexural strength and elastic modulus at three levels of hierarchy using focused ion beam (FIB) prepared cantilevers of micrometre size. The results are compared and analysed using a theoretical model proposed by Jäger and Fratzl and developed by Gao and co-workers. Both properties decrease with increasing hierarchical dimension along with a switch in mechanical behaviour from linear-elastic to elastic-inelastic. We found Gao's model matched the results very well. This journal is © 2011 The Royal Society.
ISSN: 1742-5662
Journal: Journal of the Royal Society Interface 
Institute: Keramische Hochleistungswerkstoffe M-9 
Werkstoffphysik und -technologie M-22 
Document Type: Article
Project: Untersuchung des Deformations- und Bruchverhaltens der hierarchischen Ebenen von Zahnschmelz 
More Funding information: Forschungs- und Wissenschaftsstiftung Hamburg
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