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“Toward Virtual Cartilage: An Analysis Framework for Health and Disease”

Event Type
Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering
190 Engineering Sciences Building
Nov 7, 2017   3:00 - 4:00 pm  
Professor David Pierce, Departments of Mechanical Engineering/Biomedical Engineering/Mathematics, University of Connecticut
Jason Lewis
Originating Calendar
MechSE Seminars


The interplay between bending rigidity and out-of-plane stresses, capillary forces or swelling in thin films can be manipulated so as to cause patterned 2D films to curve, bend and fold into 3D materials and devices. In this talk, the design, fabrication and characterization of such materials and devices will be described. The emphasis of our approach has been on ensuring mass-production of micro and nanodevices in a high-throughput manner with diverse materials such as 2D layered materials (e.g. graphene), device grade silicon and related materials and hydrogels. By leveraging the precision of planar lithography approaches such as photo, e-beam and nanoimprint methodologies, a range of functional patterns can be incorporated into these thin film self-assembling systems so as to provide value for optics, electronics and medicine. These include metamaterials, flexible devices, curved microfluidics, drug-delivery capsules, anatomically realistic models for tissue engineering, antennas, e-blocks, sensors, soft-robotic actuators and surgical tools.


About the Speaker

Dr. Pierce received the B.S. degree from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees (with S.D. Sheppard) from Stanford University, CA, all in mechanical engineering. Additionally, he received a Ph.D.-Minor degree in mathematics from Stanford University and completed his Habilitation (Venia Legendi) in experimental and computational biomechanics (with G.A. Holzapfel) at the Graz University of Technology, Austria. With the Interdisciplinary Mechanics Laboratory at UConn he studies the theory, development and application of pragmatic computational methods for physical problems of practical importance using computational and experimental solid (bio) mechanics, finite element methods, applied mathematics, and corollary programming/software. Applications include the mechanics of cartilage in health and disease, the mechanics of arteries, and, in collaboration with A.M. Fitzgerald & Associates, fracture prediction methodologies for microelectromechanical systems. His recent work proposes several new 3-D, image-based (e.g. ultra-high field diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging and multiphoton microscopy) constitutive models for articular cartilage, facilitating FE simulation of sample/patient-specific cartilage deformation, fiber network response and fluid permeation.


Host:  Professor Mariana Kersh

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