Modeling and Simulation of Nanoindentation


Nanoindentation is a hardness test method applied to small volumes of material which can provide some unique effects and spark many related research activities. To fully understand the phenomena observed during nanoindentation tests, modeling and simulation methods have been developed to predict the mechanical response of materials during nanoindentation. However, challenges remain with those computational approaches, because of their length scale, predictive capability, and accuracy. This article reviews recent progress and challenges for modeling and simulation of nanoindentation, including an overview of molecular dynamics, the quasicontinuum method, discrete dislocation dynamics, and the crystal plasticity finite element method, and discusses how to integrate multiscale modeling approaches seamlessly with experimental studies to understand the length-scale effects and microstructure evolution during nanoindentation tests, creating a unique opportunity to establish new calibration procedures for the nanoindentation technique.


Materials Science and Engineering


This work was supported by an NSF CAREER Award (CMMI-1652662).

Keywords and Phrases

Crystal Microstructure; Dislocations (Crystals); Microstructure; Molecular Dynamics; Nanoindentation, Computational Approach; Crystal Plasticity Finite Element Method; Discrete Dislocation Dynamics; Micro-Structure Evolutions; Modeling And Simulation Methods; Nanoindentation Techniques; Predictive Capabilities; Quasi-Continuum Methods, Finite Element Method

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

1047-4838; 1543-1851

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





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Publication Date

01 Nov 2017