Indentation for soft materials: Introduction and selected examples

Biomedical and bioengineering research most often deals with soft materials. Until recently, it was not possible to study the mechanical properties of soft tissues or hydrogels. But with the development of new scaffolds and more localized medical treatments, mechanical properties of soft biomaterials are becoming more important. This is why we started to locally investigate stiffness and creep of these materials. This webinar will show the nanoindentation approach for measuring soft materials that will be demonstrated on several examples. We will show how stiffness of human knee cartilage or human cornea can be measured locally and how the indentation results on contact lenses can be affected by the loading rate. Finally, we will focus on measurements of hydrogels and demonstrate how thin hyaluronic acid foils can be measured.

The main topics will be:

  • Why do we indent soft materials?
  • Cartilage: Stiffness gradient of human knee cartilage
  • Cornea: How stiff is human cornea and how can indentation help in terms of treatment?
  • Contact lenses: Effect of loading rate on elastic modulus
  • Hydrogels: Can we measure their stiffness?
  • Hyaluronic acid foils: Can we also measure thin hydrogel sheets?










Jiří Nohava, PhD. (English)
Jiří Nohava, PhD.

Jiri Nohava is the Head of Product Competence & Lead Application Scientist of the Mechanical Surface Characterization unit at Anton Paar. He obtained his PhD in materials science at the Czech Technical University in Prague. He joined Anton Paar in 2007 and has become a specialist in instrumented indentation and tribology in various domains. His main task is development of new applications with Anton Paar instruments in scientific and industrial projects. He regularly publishes in peer-reviewed journals and participates in international conferences.

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