Editor's Note: This article is part of the ET Feature Series on Nanomechanical Characterization of Materials by nanoindentation (instrumented indentation testing) which lends itself to testing small volumes of material. This series features articles describing the main experimental technique(s), background theory and data reduction, testing of polymers and low-k thin films. Additionally, most recent developments in these techniques will be addressed throughout the series. Series editor: Ibrahim Miskioglu, Michigan Technological University.
Nanoindentation of Biological and Biomimetic Materials
Article first published online: 23 MAR 2011
© 2011, Society for Experimental Mechanics
Volume 37, Issue 1, pages 73–87, January/February 2013
How to Cite
Oyen, M.L. (2013), Nanoindentation of Biological and Biomimetic Materials. Experimental Techniques, 37: 73–87. doi: 10.1111/j.1747-1567.2011.00716.x
- Issue published online: 7 JAN 2013
- Article first published online: 23 MAR 2011
- Received: July 7, 2010; accepted: October 28, 2010
Nanoindentation techniques have recently been adapted for the study of biological materials. This feature will consider the experimental adaptations required for such studies. Following a brief review of the structure and constitutive behavior of biological materials, we examine the experimental aspects in detail, including working with hydrated samples, time-dependent mechanical behavior and extremely compliant materials. The analysis of experimental data, consistent with the constitutive response of the material, will then be treated. Examples of nanoindentation data collected using commercially-available instruments are shown, including nanoindentation creep curves of biological materials and relaxation responses of biomimetic hydrogels. Finally, we conclude by examining the current state and future needs of the biological nanoindentation community.