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Prestress in Composite Polymer Gels as a Model for Articular Cartilage



Alexandros Chremos, Jack F. Douglas, Peter Basser, Ferenc Horkay


Articular cartilage is a composite gel-like material found in animal and human joints and exhibits a unique load-bearing performance that has been challenging to reproduce in synthetic materials and in molecular dynamics simulations. We investigate a composite hydrogel that mimics functional properties of articular cartilage as a framework to investigate the load-bearing properties of these materials. Specifically, we find that the emergence of pre-stress in composite gels derives primarily from the stiffness of the polymer matrix and the asymmetry in the enthalpic interactions of the embedded particles and polymer matrix. Our simulations of the prestress agree qualitatively with osmotic pressure measurements on our model composite hydrogel material.


composite gel, prestress, osmotic pressure, cartilage, hydrogel, molecular dynamics


Chremos, A. , Douglas, J. , Basser, P. and Horkay, F. (2022), Prestress in Composite Polymer Gels as a Model for Articular Cartilage, Gels-, [online], (Accessed July 21, 2024)


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Created November 2, 2022, Updated March 13, 2023