The size effect of nanoindentation on ZnO nanofilms

Guoxin CAO, Xi CHEN

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Nanoindentation behaviors of zinc oxide (ZnO) nanofilms with different film thicknesses are studied by using both molecular mechanics (MM) simulations and continuum analyses. It is found that there is a significant size effect on the indentation modulus obtained from MM simulations, which is absent in the continuum studies. The indentation modulus increases with the film thickness, and it also increases with the indentation depth; the trend of such a variation also depends on the film thickness. The contributions of the contact size effect, film thickness size effect, and microstructural size effect (surface effect) are elucidated and their couplings are explored. In addition, the substrate effect and nonlinear hyperelastic effect are incorporated to explain the size dependence of elastic indentation behaviors of ZnO nanofilms. © 2007 American Institute of Physics.
Original languageEnglish
Article number123513
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2007
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

This work is supported in part by NSF CMS-0407743, CMMI-CAREER-0643726, and in part by Columbia University Academic Quality Fund “Columbia Nanomechanics Research Center.”


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