The purpose of this research was to explore the various features of a natural tooth's inherent structural design of a natural tooth that enable it to perform its mechanical functions effectively, and then to apply the principles and techniques inspired by these investigations to the design of prostheses for replacing a single missing tooth. The biomechanical analysis of the natural tooth was performed on both a macroscopic (overall shape as determined by its anatomy) and a microscopic (effect of microstructures on bulk material properties and their distribution) scale. The nature-inspired design guidelines were then implemented within a FE framework for optimizing dental prostheses designs. Finally, the mechanical performances of the optimal designs derived from the numerical models were validated with in vitro tests.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. August 2014. Major: Oral Biology. Advisor: Dr. Alex Fok.1 computer file (PDF); xv, 227 pages.
Nature-inspired shape optimization of dental restoration for replacing single missing tooth.
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