Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type





Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Yuebin Charles Lu

Second Advisor

Dr. Fuqian Yang


The complex phenomenon of indentation deformation is studied using finite element analysis for both homogeneous and layered materials. For the homogeneous materials, the elastic-plastic deformation at large indentation depth is studied. The variation of the load-displacement curves as well as the variation of the energy ratio with the applied indentation depth for different strain hardening indices is presented. The power law relation between the indentation load and depth for shallow indentation becomes invalid for deep indentation. The ratio of plastic energy to total mechanical work is a linear function of the ratio of residual indentation depth and maximum indentation depth. For the layered materials (film-substrate systems), the elastic deformation under an indenter is studied. Various material parameters are investigated, including film thickness and modulus. A generalized power law equation is presented for characterizing the indentation load-displacement responses of film-substrate structures.