Product Idea |

Three Smallest Bones in the Human Body

I created this LEGO model because I feel that this topic was not yet explored deeply enough to the level it would deserve. Thanks to this amazing mechanism in our body, we can experience and understand the sounds created around us. The three smallest bones in the human body are called malleus, stapes and incus and they are located in the middle ear. When sound in the form of the wave in the air travels to our ears, it hits the eardrum, which is just a special stretched skin. Here, the first of the three smallest bones comes on the scene, it is connected to the eardrum and transmits the hits of the sound wave to the other bone in the form of mechanical movement. The bone called also the Hammer passes the mechanical movement on the Anvil, which finally passes it to the last bone called Stapes. In this stage, Stapes is touching the Cochlea and transmits the vibrations there. Cochlea is in reality a circular tube twisted into the known form resembling a snail shell (Cochlea means Snail in Latin). This tube is filled with liquid. The vibrations that are caused here by Stapes are creating waves in this liquid. Cochleas tube has many small hairs inside, which are moving due to the waves in the liquid. These moving tiny hairs are translating these moves into electrical signals that our brain can understand. This signal is then transmitted via the auditory nerve directly into the brain. It processes these signals and can create assumptions, if it is important, what it means and so on. I wanted to make a model which represents all these processes, but is not too schematic, but neither too anatomical. The functionality and clarity were the main elements that I was focusing on. The main platform should have carried the most important parts of the system (Ear Drum, Three Bones, Cochlea) and for representation of sound I have decided to use two separate small platforms with music notes. The electrical signals are transmitted via nerves made of neurons with an axon. So I have added one more platform with neurons that are transmitting and also (in the brain) processing it. I did not want to add additional details to not make this important mechanism confusing (The loop-shaped tubes in Cochlea that help us to maintain balance). The purpose of this model is to show this amazing mechanism in a way that is easy to understand. Visually, I have chosen colours that represent the tissues of the human body. I did not want to use very distinct colours (like green or yellow) to not make the model too distinctive from what it represents.

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