Mechanism of High Fracture Strength of Bone
Scanning electron microscope (SEM) observation showed that femur bone is a kind of bioceramic composite consisting of hydroxyapatite layers and protein matters. The hydroxyapatite layers are further composed of hydroxyapatite fiber sheets. The observation also showed that the hydroxyapatite fiber sheets possess very thin fiber shape. The thickness of the hydroxyapatite fiber sheets is within nanometer scale. The mechanism of the high fracture strength of the bone was investigated based on the microstructural characteristics of the hydroxyapatite fiber sheets and the theory of fracture mechanics. The result reveals that the thin fiber shape of the hydroxyapatite fiber sheets endows the bone with high fracture strength.
Kunyuan Gao, Shaoxiong Zhou, Xinqing Zhao
B. Chen et al., "Mechanism of High Fracture Strength of Bone", Materials Science Forum, Vol. 685, pp. 379-383, 2011