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Concrete Floor–Bovine Claw Contact Pressures Related to Floor Roughness and Deformation of the Claw

Journal of Dairy Science
American Dairy Science Association
DOI: 10.3168/jds.s0022-0302(06)72567-x
  • Physiology And Management


Abstract The intention of this research was to study the impact of concrete floor surface roughness on a bovine claw model and to assess the deformation of the bovine claw model under load. The pressure distribution between the floor and the claw is the key method in this research. Monitoring foot-to-ground pressure distributions may provide insight into the relation between high local pressures and foot lesions. Concrete floor samples were made with 5 different finishing methods. Their roughness was determined by measuring the heights of the “peaks and the valleys” of the surface with a high-precision laser beam. The smoothest surface was the sample finished with a metal float (surface roughness Ra=0.062mm) and the roughest surface occurred with the heavily sandblasted sample (surface roughness Ra=0.488mm). The roughness of the concrete floor samples was related to the mean and peak contact pressures that can occur in a laboratory test bench between floor and bovine claw. It was found that the claw itself has approximately 2 times more effect on these contact pressures than the surface roughness. Peak pressures found were high enough (up to 111MPa) to cause damage to the bovine claw sole horn. The strains occurring in the horn wall were measured and related to the floor-finishing method and the load. Strain gauge measurements indicated that it is difficult to predict what kind of deformation of the claw wall will occur at a certain location. Different strains will occur for different floor-finishing methods. The corresponding stresses in the horn wall did not exceed the yield stress (14 and 11MPa for dorsal and abaxial wall horn, respectively).

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