Testing the mechanical properties of biological soft tissues requires specialized test equipment. Test samples must be kept at 37°C in a moist environment when testing tissues such as ligaments, tendons, muscle and cartilage, blood vessels, brain, esophagus, skin and bio-engineered replacement tissues. It is important to test these materials in a true working environment because the mechanical properties change considerably when tested in ambient conditions.

Biological test samples are typically small and delicate with low strength characteristics, so it’s especially important to configure the system using a high-resolution test controller outfitted with low force load cells and precision displacement or strain sensors. Gripping the test specimen tends to remain experimental by nature and may require specialized lightweight test fixtures. Many grips are configured to match sample characteristics by blending grip concepts including line contact jaws, roughened jaw surfaces, interlocking wave jaws, adhesively bonded specimen tabs, staples and even sample stitched ends.

Modular physiological baths produce temperature controlled saline environments that replicate in vivo conditions. Baths are commonly used to ensure the biological samples mechanical properties are maintained or that replacement materials are tested in true working environments.

Characterizing materials for their viscoelastic properties involves performing stress relaxation, creep and dynamic characterization tests. Applications software is available for the test controller.

Recommended Test Machines

  • All-electric design ensures clean, portable operation in small labs
  • Modular design approach to match forces and performance of actuators together for an optimized solution
  • Integration of video DIC technology is available
  • Lower purchase, operating, and maintenance costs than hydraulic equivalents
  • Quiet, quick installation, no external cooling or water necessary, repeatable, durable, configurable to specific testing application and flexible