Approximate model for blunt objects indenting cohesive-frictional materials

J. P. Hambleton*, A. Drescher

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


An approximate two-dimensional model for indentation of blunt objects into various types of rigid-perfectly plastic cohesive-frictional material is derived. Particular emphasis is placed on considering indentation as a process involving evolution of the boundary of material displaced by the indenter. Force-penetration relationships are obtained by an incremental approach utilizing key kinematic and static information from indentation of a flat punch. Albeit approximate, the proposed model applies to arbitrary indenter geometry and weightless or ponderable cohesive-frictional materials exhibiting associated or non-associated plastic flow. Two specific indenter geometries, the cylinder and blunt wedge, are explored in detail. Favorable agreement is found between the analytic results and those obtained using the finite element method (FEM). For both the wedge and cylinder, it is further shown that accurate analytic expressions relating indentation force explicitly to penetration can be derived. In the case of the wedge and weightless material, predictions of indentation force obtained from the derived expressions are very close to those computed from implicit equations available in the literature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-271
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 25 2012


  • Cohesive-frictional
  • Cylinder
  • Finite element method
  • Indentation
  • Rigid-plastic
  • Wedge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanics of Materials

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