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Biomechanics

The Biomechanics research groups and laboratories conduct studies on various applications and models in the field of cardiovascular engineering, voice production, bone fracture and osteoporosis, mechanics of biological materials, and biomimetics.

Current research projects involve the design of new vascular stents and catheters; structural and multi-objective optimization of stent-like cages for rotating catheter protection; characterization of biological tissue; models of voice production; design, construction and evaluation of implants for vocal fold alteration and reconstruction; numerical simulations of laryngeal flows (CFD); damage accumulation patterns in healthy and diseased bone; fractures of tooth enamel and dentin; and the development of novel "bio-inspired" composite materials.

Our primary facility is the Cardiovascular Engineering Laboratory at the McGill and Montreal Heart Institute. It houses a PIV system from TSI, a rheometer from Bohlin, a pulsatile pump from Harvard Apparatus, a Bio-Pump from Medtronic, roller pumps from Masterflex, ELF3200 mechanical tester for soft tissues from Enduratec, high-precision pressure gages, EMF flow meters, and various modeling software (Fidap, Matlab, Labview, Ansys, Pro-E, ICEM, Femlab). Facilities involved with voice production contain a Dantec time-resolved PIV system, a Dantec hot-wire anemometry system, one Dantec LDA, one Varian gas chromatograph, one Agilent VXI data acquisition system, one Polytec LDV system with both standard and fiber optic heads, one B&K sound level meter, microphones, accelerometers, pressure and flow transducers, computers, and software (Abaqus, Fluent, Comsol, Power Flow, Solid Works). Our research groups measure the mechanical properties of small bone or teeth samples with miniature loading stages, and they monitor small-scale deformation and fracture mechanisms with optical or atomic force microscopy. Our groups have access to CLUMEQ supercomputing facilities to model and hypothesize the deformation and fracture processes in biological tissues.

Research funding is primarily contributed by the federal and provincial governments through CIHR, NSERC, CFI, FRSQ and FQRNT. Other significicant sources of support include a grant from NIH NIDCD (R01 DC005788) and industrial partners, such as Medtronic, Baylis Medical, Coroneo Medical and Opsens Inc.

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