ABOUT FRACTURES: A fractured bone is the same thing as a broken bone. Bones break when they are unable to support the energy placed on them. That energy can be acute, as from a car crash or a two-story fall, or chronic, from low-energy repetitive activities. The latter is responsible for stress fractures, an overuse injury commonly seen in athletes. The increased demand placed on the bone causes it to remodel and become stronger in areas of higher stress, but if the repetitive demands become too great, a stress fracture can result.
ART AS INSPIRATION: Using a technique to analyze the stresses on structures standing in place, engineers predicted the places where Michelangelo's famous statue "David" may be at risk. After completing a three dimensional scan of the statue, their computer technique predicted points of stress that correlated with the location of actual cracks in the statue. The technique can be used to analyze the weak points of many structures, from bridges to artificial hip implants to car parts.
The American Society of Civil Engineers and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc.-USA, contributed to the information contained in the TV portion of this report.