Cranial design and function in a large theropod dinosaur

  title={Cranial design and function in a large theropod dinosaur},
  author={Emily J. Rayfield and David B. Norman and Celeste C. Horner and Jack Horner and Paula M. Smith and Jeffrey J. Thomason and Paul Upchurch},
Finite element analysis (FEA) is used by industrial designers and biomechanicists to estimate the performance of engineered structures or human skeletal and soft tissues subjected to varying regimes of stress and strain. FEA is rarely applied to problems of biomechanical design in animals, despite its potential to inform structure–function analysis. Non-invasive techniques such as computed tomography scans can be used to generate accurate three-dimensional images of structures, such as skulls… 

Using finite-element analysis to investigate suture morphology: a case study using large carnivorous dinosaurs.

  • E. Rayfield
  • Environmental Science
    The anatomical record. Part A, Discoveries in molecular, cellular, and evolutionary biology
  • 2005
It was discovered that Allosaurus cranial sutures appear generally capable of accommodating stress and strain patterns generated during biting and it is argued that useful information can be obtained from finite-element models of extinct animals, providing that adequate assumptions are made and appropriate questions asked.

Finite element analysis in vertebrate biomechanics.

  • C. Ross
  • Biology
    The anatomical record. Part A, Discoveries in molecular, cellular, and evolutionary biology
  • 2005
This special issue of The Anatomical Record presents a series of papers that apply the method of finite element analysis (FEA) to questions in vertebrate biomechanics, and addresses methodological issues, such as the relative importance of loading conditions and material properties for generating an accurate model and the validation of models using in vivo strain data.

A toolbox for the retrodeformation and muscle reconstruction of fossil specimens in Blender

A new interactive tool in the free open access software Blender is created to enable interactive three-dimensional modelling of muscles, which can be applied to both palaeontological and human biomechanics research to generate muscle force magnitudes and lines of action for FEA.

Establishing a framework for archosaur cranial mechanics

If mechanical optimization were the only criterion on which skull form is based, then most archosaurs could in theory strengthen their skulls to increase resistance to biting forces, and living crocodylians appear to strengthen their skull with a palate and filled fenestral opening in the most efficient way possible.

Finite element analysis in vertebrate palaeontology

Originally developed for engineering, FEA soon was introduced to human medicine by modelling the behaviour of bone, teeth, cartilage and soft tissue, mostly in relation with the design and materials of implants, but in biology and palaeontology the use of FEA is still at the beginning.

Strain in the ostrich mandible during simulated pecking and validation of specimen‐specific finite element models

This study investigating how accurately FE models can predict experimentally derived strain in the mandible of the ostrich Struthio camelus highlights the predictive potential of even simple FE models for studies in extant and extinct vertebrates, but also emphasizes the importance of geometry and sutures.

Combined finite element and multibody dynamics analysis of biting in a Uromastyx hardwickii lizard skull

The findings show that higher stress occurs in regions where cranial sutures are located in functioning skulls, and as such support the hypothesis that sutURES may play a pivotal role in relieving stress and producing a more uniform pattern of stress distribution across the skull.

Finite Element Analysis and Understanding the Biomechanics and Evolution of Living and Fossil Organisms

Finite element analysis has much potential in addressing questions of form-function relationships, providing appropriate questions are ask, and explicit hypothesis-testing bridges these two standpoints.

High‐Resolution Three‐Dimensional Computer Simulation of Hominid Cranial Mechanics

It is hypothesized that, despite energetic costs, this system may lend adaptive advantage through enhancing the organism's ability to modify its behavior before reaching catastrophic failure in bony or dental structures.



Cranial strength in relation to estimated biting forces in some mammals

Whether the bending strength of the skull in some mammals correlates with the maximal loads imposed through the masticatory apparatus is examined, using the methods of beam theory.

A survey of finite element analysis in orthopedic biomechanics: the first decade.

From structure to process, from organ to cell: recent developments of FE-analysis in orthopaedic biomechanics.

Advances in FEA have brought FEA from a continuum stress analysis tool to a tool which plays an ever-increasing role in the scientific understanding of tissue structure, adaptation, and the optimal design of orthopaedic implants.

Mechanical factors in the evolution of the mammalian secondary palate: A theoretical analysis

The mammalian secondary palate may be interpreted as one of a number of methods, seen in the mammal‐like reptiles, for strengthening the rostrum.

Bone structure and the patterns of force transmission in the cat skull (Felis catus)

A continuum of structural organisation was established between the alveolar region and the site of attachment of the temporalis and masseter muscles and the glenoid region.

The Evolution of the Antorbital Cavity of Archosaurs: A Study in Soft-Tissue Reconstruction in the Fossil Record with an Analysis of the Function of Pneumaticity

Resolution of the antorbital cavity is correctly viewed as a “soft-tissue problem,” and is addressed within the context of the extant phylogenetic bracket (EPB) approach for reconstructing the unpreserved features of fossil organisms.

Bite-force estimation for Tyrannosaurus rex from tooth-marked bones

The discovery of skeletal remains with bite marks from Tyrannosaurus rex makes it possible to estimate, through indentation simulations on bovine ilia, the bite forces produced by T. rexduring feeding, and these estimates rival the largest bite forces determined for any taxon to date and suggest thatT.

The mechanical properties of biological materials

It seems to me that the mechanical properties of biological materials are of interest to the engineer for 3 main reasons: What characteristics do they have? Why and how? How can we benefit from this

Principles of Animal Design: The Optimization And Symmorphosis Debate

A Tribute to C. Richard Taylor and Liana Bolis Symmorphosis and optimization of biological design: introduction and questions Ewald R. Weibel Index.