The microstructure at the interface of cortical and cancellous bone is quite complicated. The fracture mechanisms at this location are necessary for understanding the comprehensive fracture of the whole bone. The goal of this study is to identify fracture toughness in terms of J integral and fracture mechanism at the interface between cortical and cancellous bone. For this purpose, single edge notch bend (SENB) specimens were prepared from bovine proximal femur according to ASTM-E399 standard. Bone samples were prepared such that half of the sample width consists of cortical bone and other half of the width was cancellous bone; this interfacial bone is referred as a corticellous bone. Elastic–plastic fracture mechanics was used to measure fracture toughness. The J integral (both elastic and plastic) was used to quantify the fracture toughness. The plastic part of J integral value (Jpl) of corticellous specimen was 9310 J m−2, and shown to be 27 times of the J integral of the elastic part (Jel), 341 J m−2. The total J integral of the corticellous bone was found to be 9651 J m−2, which is close to two times of the cortical bone, 4731 J m−2. This study observed that J integral of corticellous bone is higher than the cortical bone since more energy is required for plastic deformation of corticellous bone due to crack branches and slowdown at the interface between cortical and cancellous bone.
Keywords: fracture toughness; cortical and cancellous interface; corticellous bone; stress intensity factor; elastic–plastic fracture mechanics; J integral