Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Prabhu, Raj

Committee Member

McIntosh, Andy

Committee Member

Rhee, Hongjoo

Committee Member

Horstemeyer, Mark

Date of Degree


Original embargo terms


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Biomedical Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering


In this study, the teeth of the Carcharodon carcharias (Great White) and the Galeocerdo cuvier (Tiger) sharks were analyzed to examine their optimized structure-property relationships and edge serrations with regards to shearing. Structure-property analysis was conducted using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, and optical microscopy to study the teeth using parametric optimization. Quantifying the structural properties also focused on the tooth serrations, which were captured in SEM and micrographs and were analyzed for geometric parameters using ImageJ software. Nanoindentation was performed to determine the material's mechanical properties. Further, finite element analysis (FEA) of the sharks' teeth serrations were carried out to quantify the optimum shearing performance of each serration type – zeroth (no serrations), first (a single array of serrations), and second (a secondary array of serrations upon the first array) order serration. Here, serration order, bite velocity, and angle-of-impact for ascertaining sharks' teeth shearing performance were analyzed. FEA results showed that serrated edges reduced the energy required to pierce and shear materials as the angle of penetration moved away from perpendicular to the surface. These bioinspired findings will help advance the design and optimization of engineered cutting tools.



Bioinspired design||shark tooth||serrations||structure-property quantification||shearing forces||strain energy||finite element analysis