Viscoelastic effects during unloading in depth-sensing indentation

  • Ngan A
  • Tang B
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With polypropylene as a prototype viscoelastic material at room temperature, it was found that a "nose" may appear in the unloading segment of the load-displacement curve during nanoindentation when the holding time at peak load is short and/or the unloading rate is small, and when the peak load is high enough. The load at which the nose appears was also found to decrease linearly with decreasing unloading rate. A linear viscoelasticity analysis was performed to interpret this effect. The analysis predicts a linear variation between the nose load and the unloading rate, and the slope of such a linear variation is also shown to be proportional to the viscosity parameter of the material. Thus, by measuring the slope of the nose-load versus unloading rate plot at a given temperature, the viscosity parameter of the specimen can be found. This is a new way of measuring the viscosity parameter of a material in addition to the existing method of force modulation and noting the frequency response of the displacement

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