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Mechanical Test: Microidentation Test

The two main principles of this test are as follows:

  • Resistance to indentation
  • Indentation Hardness - major engineering interest for metals

Elastic mechanism: plastic zone under identer

Compression mechanism: high-strain cap
under identer


Vickers Identer

Knoop Identer


  • Preparation of samples: mount & polish
  • Knoop indenter pressed by electromagnetic force
  • Indentations observed by microscope (X800)
  • Testing parameters: load & load hold time


Hardness gradient and neutral axis


Choice of identers (Vickers or Knoop?)

Vickers is an isotropic material. Knoop is anisotropic material that allows to measure microhardness gradient with higher accuracy.