Nanoindentations on Conch Shells of Gastropoda and Bivalvia Molluscs Reveal Anisotropic Evolution Against External Attacks
Abstract:Nanoindentation method has been used to explore, at the nanoscale, the mechanical properties of four different representative types of conch shells belonging to the two biggest classes of molluscs, Gastropoda and Bivalvia, in order to compare nanohardness and Young's modulus with respect to the microstructural anisotropic architectures. For the experimental tests a Nano Indenter XP (MTS Nano Instruments, Oak Ridge TN) has been used. The mechanical tests have been carried out on the inner and outer surfaces of the shells, as well as on their cross-section, near to the inner/outer surfaces and in the middle layer. The results confirm the three layered anisotropic architecture of the investigated conchs. On each of these 5 surfaces, 2 × 5 indentations have been performed at different maximum depth: from 250 nm to 4 m, with a step of 250 nm, for a total of 3200 tests. The numerous observations have been analysed applying an ad hoc modification of the Weibull Statistics, suggesting a natural evolution of the shells against external attacks.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 2010-10-01
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