Lasers create titanium alloys for hip replacements, a dance video

A biomedical engineer wins the 4th annual Dance Your Ph.D. contest with a stop-motion interpretation of his work on titanium designed for orthopedic implants.
Written by Janet Fang, Contributor

Titanium Man meets Bone Woman…

Joel Miller, a biomedical engineer at the University of Western Australia in Perth, is the winner of the 4th annual Dance Your Ph.D. contest – a competition that recognizes the best dance interpretations of a scientist’s doctoral research, sponsored by Science.

His entry is based on his work using lasers to create titanium alloys that are both strong and flexible enough for long-lasting hip and knee replacements.

Using 2,200 still shots, the stop-motion animation dance taught me that titanium can take 2 forms – alpha and beta phases – and the key is to have controlled amounts of both in orthopedic implants.

And here it is:

Microstructure-Property relationships in Ti2448 components produced by Selective Laser Melting: A Love Story from Joel Miller on Vimeo.

As the grand prize winner, Miller takes home $1,000 and gets a free trip to Belgium to be crowned at TEDxBrussels, a meeting of scientists, artists, and business leaders next month.

Miller also won in the physics category. The winners for chemistry, biology, and social sciences had dances based on x-ray crystallography, fruit fly sex, and pigeon courtship.

Watch videos of the other winners, the 16 finalists, or all 55 entries.

The contest was conceived 4 years ago while planning a party at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology in Vienna, “in the middle of the worst of the Ph.D. experience,” says biologist and Science correspondent John Bohannon. “It’s where you've had to defend and explain your Ph.D. research so many times that you've grown to hate it.”

His solution: they'd have to dance their research instead.

Via ScienceNOW.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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