Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Strength of Silicon Containing Nanoscale Flaws



Antonia Pajares, Michael Chumakov, Brian R. Lawn


A study was made of the strength of highly polished silicon surfaces after nanoindentation with a Berkovich diamond. Strengths of the indented surfaces were measured as a function of flaw size, quantified by indenter penetration. Analogous data from etched soda-lime glass surfaces were used as a control. The strengths increased with diminishing indentation flaw size for the two materials, especially below the threshold for visible radial cracking at the impression corners. The threshold flaw size is substantially lower in the silicon, rendering this material especially vulnerable to strength degradation from small-scale contact damage.
Journal of Materials Research
No. 2


flaws, glass, nanoindentation, silicon, strength, threshhold behavior


Pajares, A. , Chumakov, M. and Lawn, B. (2004), Strength of Silicon Containing Nanoscale Flaws, Journal of Materials Research (Accessed April 15, 2024)
Created January 31, 2004, Updated October 12, 2021