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Advances in Materials Science and Engineering
Volume 2011, Article ID 539252, 6 pages
Research Article

Analysis of the Indentation Size Effect in the Microhardness Measurements in B6O

1DST/NRF Centre of Excellence in Strong Materials, School of Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, Private Bag 3, Johannesburg 2050, South Africa
2DST/NRF Centre of Excellence in Strong Materials and School of Physics, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, Private Bag 3, Johannesburg 2050, South Africa
3Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems, Winterbergstra_e 28, 01277 Dresden, Germany

Received 9 February 2011; Accepted 13 April 2011

Academic Editor: Paul Munroe

Copyright © 2011 Ronald Machaka et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The Vickers microhardness measurements of boron suboxide (B6O) ceramics prepared by uniaxial hot-pressing was investigated at indentation test loads in the range from 0.10 to 2.0 kgf. Results from the investigation indicate that the measured microhardness exhibits an indentation load dependence. Based on the results, we present a comprehensive model intercomparison study of indentation size effects (ISEs) in the microhardness measurements of hot-pressed B6O discussed using existing models, that is, the classical Meyer's law, Li and Bradt's proportional specimen resistance model (PSR), the modified proportional specimen resistance model (MPSR), and Carpinteri's multifractal scaling law (MFSL). The best correlation between literature-cited load-independent Vickers microhardness values, the measured values, and applied models was achieved in the case of the MPSR and the MFSL models.