Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Aerospace Engineering


Engineering Mechanics

First Advisor

Ashraf F. Bastawros


In the natural world there is no such thing as a perfectly sharp edge, either thru wear or machining imprecation at the macroscopic scale all edges have curvature. This curvature can have significant impact when comparing results with theory. Both numerical and analytic models for the contact of an object with a sharp edge predict infinite stresses which are not present in the physical world. It is for this reason that the influence of rounded edges must be studied to better understand how they affect model response.

Using a commercial available finite element package this influence will be studied in two different problems; how this edge geometry effects the shape of a contusion (bruise) and the accuracy of analytic models for the shaft loaded blister test (SLBT). The contusion study presents work that can be used to enable medical examiners to better determine if the object in question was capable of causing the contusions present. Using a simple layered tissue model which represents a generic location on the human body, a sweep of objects with different edges properties is studied using a simple strain based injury metric. This analysis aims to examine the role that contact area and energy have on the formation, location, and shape of the resulting contusion. In studying the SLBT with finite element analysis and cohesive zone modeling, the assessment of various analytic models will provide insight into how to accurately measure the fracture energy for both the simulation and experiment. This provides insight into the interactions between a film, the substrate it is bonded to and the loading plug. In addition, parametric studies are used to examine potential experimental designs and enable future work in this field. The final product of this project provides tools and insight into future study of the effect rounded edges have on contact and this work enables for more focused studies within desired regimes of interest.


Copyright Owner

Christopher James Giuffre



File Format


File Size

55 pages