Heath Henninger, PhD
  • Adjunct Assistant Professor, Biomedical Engineering
  • Staff Scientist, Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute
  • Adjunct Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
  • Research Associate Professor, Orthopaedic Surgery Operations
  • Associate Professor, Orthopaedic Surgery

Research Summary

My laboratory group, a member of the Orthopaedic Research Laboratory (ORL), specializes in the biomechanics and kinematics of the human shoulder. Research includes biomechanical testing of shoulder arthroplasty, rotator cuff repair, biceps tenodesis, and related topics.


  • BS, Mechanical Engineering, GMI/Kettering University. Project: Specification of Servo Drive Assembly for Indexing Wall Applications
  • PhD, Bioengineering, University of Utah. Project: Microscopic Constituents and Their Mechanical Contributions in Ligament


Heath grew up in Pennsylvania and earned his BS in Mechanical Engineering at Kettering University (formerly General Motors Institute) in Flint, MI. Following 8 years working with industrial robotics, he chose to pursue his PhD in Bioengineering at the University of Utah. Under the mentorship of Dr. Jeff Weiss (PhD) in the Musculoskeletal Research Laboratories, he studied the spatial distribution and mechanical contributions of sulfated glycosaminoglycans in medial collateral ligament. He then completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the University of Utah Department of Orthopaedics, working with Drs. Robert Tashjian (MD) and Robert Burks (MD) to develop a biomechanical shoulder simulator to study the native and repaired/replaced shoulder.  Heath also contributed to the development of a biplane fluoroscopy system to measure in vivo joint kinematics with Dr. Andrew Anderson (PhD).  In 2012 he was appointed Research Assistant Professor in the Utah Department of Orthopaedics with an Adjunct appointment in Bioengineering. As a faculty member, Heath’s research is focused on the kinematics and biomechanics of the shoulder, with concentrations in reverse total shoulder arthroplasty, biceps tenodesis, and osseointegrated prosthetics for the upper extremity.  Outside of research, Heath is an avid golfer, and also enjoys fly-fishing, snowboarding, and keeping active in the outdoors with his family