Quantifying nonlinear anisotropic elastic material properties of biological tissue by use of membrane inflation

J.E. Bischoff, E.S. Drexler, A.J. Slifka, and C.N. McCowan

Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering, Volume 12, Issue 3 June 2009, pp. 353-369

Determination of material parameters for soft tissue frequently involves regression of material parameters for nonlinear, anisotropic constitutive models against experimental data from heterogeneous tests. Here, parameter estimation based on membrane inflation is considered. A four parameter nonlinear, anisotropic hyperelastic strain energy function was used to model the material, in which the parameters are cast in terms of key response features. The experiment was simulated using finite element (FE) analysis in order to predict the experimental measurements of pressure versus profile strain. Material parameter regression was automated using inverse FE analysis; parameter values were updated by use of both local and global techniques, and the ability of these techniques to efficiently converge to a best case was examined. This approach provides a framework in which additional experimental data, including surface strain measurements or local structural information, may be incorporated in order to quantify heterogeneous nonlinear material properties.
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