Origin of a Nanoindentation Pop-in Event in Silicon Crystal

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Research units

  • University of Silesia in Katowice
  • Nagaoka University of Technology


The Letter concerns surface nanodeformation of Si crystal using atomistic simulation. Our results account for both the occurrence and absence of pop-in events during nanoindentation. We have identified two distinct processes responsible for indentation deformation based on load-depth response, stress-induced evolution of crystalline structure and surface profile. The first, resulting in a pop-in, consists of the extrusion of the crystalline high pressure Si-III/XII phase, while the second, without a pop-in, relies on a flow of amorphized Si to the crystal surface. Of particular interest to silicon technology will be our clarification of the interplay among amorphization, crystal-to-crystal transition, and extrusion of transformed material to the surface.


Original languageEnglish
Article number095502
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2017
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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