Characterization of a hyper-viscoelastic phantom mimicking biological soft tissue using an abdominal pneumatic driver with magnetic resonance elastography (MRE)

Gwladys E. Leclerc, Laëtitia Debernard, Félix Foucart, Ludovic Robert, Kay M. Pelletier, Fabrice Charleux, Richard Ehman, Marie Christine Ho Ba Tho, Sabine F. Bensamoun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to create a polymer phantom mimicking the mechanical properties of soft tissues using experimental tests and rheological models.Multifrequency Magnetic Resonance Elastography (MMRE) tests were performed on the present phantom with a pneumatic driver to characterize the viscoelastic (μ, η) properties using Voigt, Maxwell, Zener and Springpot models. To optimize the MMRE protocol, the driver behavior was analyzed with a vibrometer. Moreover, the hyperelastic properties of the phantom were determined using compressive tests and Mooney-Rivlin model.The range of frequency to be used with the round driver was found between 60Hz and 100Hz as it exhibits one type of vibration mode for the membrane. MRE analysis revealed an increase in the shear modulus with frequency reflecting the viscoelastic properties of the phantom showing similar characteristic of soft tissues. Rheological results demonstrated that Springpot model better revealed the viscoelastic properties (μ=3.45kPa, η=6.17Pas) of the phantom and the Mooney-Rivlin coefficients were C 10=1.09.10 -2MPa and C 01=-8.96.10 -3MPa corresponding to μ=3.95kPa.These studies suggest that the phantom, mimicking soft tissue, could be used for preliminary MRE tests to identify the optimal parameters necessary for in vivo investigations. Further developments of the phantom may allow clinicians to more accurately mimic healthy and pathological soft tissues using MRE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)952-957
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Apr 5 2012



  • Abdominal pneumatic driver
  • Hyperelasticity
  • Multifrequency magnetic resonance elastography
  • Phantom
  • Viscoelasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation

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