Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 761–767

Characterization of microstructural anisotropy in orthotropic materials using a second rank tensor

  • T. P. Harrigan
  • R. W. Mann

DOI: 10.1007/BF00540446

Cite this article as:
Harrigan, T.P. & Mann, R.W. J Mater Sci (1984) 19: 761. doi:10.1007/BF00540446


A second rank symmetric tensor which describes the degree of orientation in orthotropic materials is presented and shown to reflect accurately patterns of experimental data. The use of this tensor to describe microstructural anisotropy is compared to currently accepted methods and is found to be more useful and accurate in experimental studies. A method for determining the anisotropy tensor in a material is given, based on measurements on any three mutually perpendicular planes, and the fundamental restriction of this method to orthotropic materials is discussed. Experimentally determined anisotropy tensors in five specimens of cancellous bone from five different human bones are given.

Copyright information

© Chapman and Hall Ltd. 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. P. Harrigan
    • 1
  • R. W. Mann
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Mechanical EngineeringMassachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA

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