The study of thermal properties such as conductivity and specific heat of biomaterials is very important as most biological processes, in which biological tissues, cells, and molecules are involved are dependent on body temperature. The main source of body heat is the chemical metabolism of food. Various mechanisms are being adopted by different types of animals to maintain body temperature, such as reducing blood flow through the capillaries nearest the skin surface, body hair can be fluffed up to increase insulation, heat production by shivering, etc. The hard and soft tissues, such as the flesh and bone of animals, play a very important role in keeping the required body temperature. The thermal conductivity and specific heat of the femur, rib, and scapula of two different environment animal ox, the wetland and camel desert dry land are investigated in normal and decalcified conditions. Modified Lee’s apparatus has been used to determine the thermal conductivity, while Renault’s apparatus which is based on the principle of the method of mixtures has been employed for determining the specific heat of samples that were pelletized. A difference in conductivities and specific heat of various bones in both animals was observed due to varied calcium phosphate. The decalcified bone samples of ox and camel show higher thermal conductivity compared to normal bones, while a decrease in specific heat was observed in decalcified bones. The specific heat is affected by the variations in the molecular structure due to changes in temperature. The paper suggests that these techniques are simple, elegant, and inexpensive besides being accurate.
Thermal Conductivity, Specific Heat, Decalcification, Femur, Scapula, Rib
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