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A stochastic visco-hyperelasitc model of human placenta tissue for finite element crash simulations

In: Annals of Biomedical Engineering. Vol. 39, no. 3 (2011), p. 1074-1083.

Authors: Jingwen Hu, Kathleen D. Klinich, Carl S. Miller, Jonathan D. Rupp, Giseli Nazmi, Mark D. Pearlman, and Lawrence W. Schneider.

Placental abruption is the most common cause of fetal deaths in motor-vehicle crashes, but studies on the mechanical properties of human placenta are rare. This study presents a new method of developing a stochastic viscohyperelastic material model of human placenta tissue using a combination of uniaxial tensile testing, specimen-specific finite element (FE) modeling, and stochastic optimization techniques. In our previous study, uniaxial tensile tests of 21 placenta specimens have been performed using a strain rate of 12/s. In this study, additional uniaxial tensile tests were performed using strain rates of 1/s and 0.1/s on 25 placenta specimens. Response corridors for the three loading rates were developed based on the normalized data achieved by test reconstructions of each specimen using specimen-specific FE models. Material parameters of a visco-hyperelastic model and their associated standard deviations were tuned to match both the means and standard deviations of all three response corridors using a stochastic optimization method. The results show a very good agreement between the tested and simulated response corridors, indicating that stochastic analysis can improve estimation of variability in material model parameters. The proposed method can be applied to develop stochastic material models of other biological soft tissues.

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