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ERIC Number: EJ1056951
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Mar
Pages: 3
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
Scaling in Theropod Dinosaurs: Femoral Bone Strength and Locomotion II
Lee, Scott
Physics Teacher, v53 n3 p158-160 Mar 2015
In the second paper of this series, the effect of transverse femoral stresses due to locomotion in theropod dinosaurs of different sizes was examined for the case of an unchanging leg geometry. Students are invariably thrilled to learn about theropod dinosaurs, and this activity applies the concepts of torque and stress to the issue of theropod locomotion. In this paper, our model calculation of Ref. 1 is extended to incorporate the fact that larger animals run with straighter legs. As in Ref. 1, students use geometric data for the femora of theropod dinosaurs to analyze their locomotion abilities. This can either be an in-class activity or given as a homework problem. Larger theropods are found to be less athletic in their movements than smaller theropods since the stresses in the femora of large theropods are closer to breaking their legs than smaller theropods.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A