Research at the University of Liverpool, using computer models to reconstruct the jaw muscle ofTyrannosaurus rex, has suggested that the dinosaur had the most powerful bite of any living or extinct terrestrial animal. The Liverpool scientists developed a computer model to reverse engineer the animal's bite, a method that has previously been used to predict dinosaur running speeds.
An animal's bite force is largely determined by the size of the jaw muscles. Using their computer models, researchers tested a range of alternative muscle values, as it is not precisely known what the muscles of dinosaurs were like. Even with error margins factored in, the computer model still showed that the T. rex had a more powerful bite than previously suggested.
The smallest values predicted were around 20,000 Newtons, while the largest values were as high as 57,000 Newtons, which would be equivalent to the force of a medium sized elephant sitting down on the ground.