Obtaining Viscoelastic Properties from Instrumented Indentation

  • Yang-Tse Cheng
Conference paper
Part of the Conference Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Mechanics Series book series (CPSEMS)


Instrumented indentation is a powerful tool for probing small-scale mechanical behaviors of “soft” materials, such as polymers, composites, and biomaterials [1-3]. Since many soft materials deform viscoelastically, it is important to develop robust analysis methods for obtaining viscoelastic properties from indentation measurements. Extending the early work by such pioneers as Lee [4], Radok [5], Lee and Radok [6], Hunter [7], Gramham [8], and Ting [9], a number of authors have recently proposed methods for determining viscoelastic properties from indentation measurements [10-33]. In this presentation, we will discuss our recent results on modeling instrumented indentation in linear viscoelastic solids [34-40]. We will first examine the relationships between initial unloading slope, contact depth, and viscoelastic properties for various loading conditions, including load- or displacement-control [35-37]. We will then discuss several commonly used methods, such as the "hold-at-peak-load" and "hold-at-the-maximum-depth" techniques [38]. We will also evaluate methods for obtaining storage and loss modulus using dynamic indentation using either spherical or pyramidal indenters [39]. Furthermore, we will discuss a set of newly proposed methods for measuring shear relaxation modulus and creep compliance using axisymmetric indenters of power-law profiles [40]. Results on indentation in viscoplastic solids will also be presented. These investigations may help improve instrumented indentation techniques for measuring mechanical properties of soft materials.


Viscoelastic Property Viscoelastic Material Creep Compliance Instrument Indentation Contact Depth 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Chemical and Materials EngineeringUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA

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