Hardness of cubic silicon nitride

I. Tanaka*, F. Oba, T. Sekine, E. Ito, A. Kubo, K. Tatsumi, H. Adachi, T. Yamamoto

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


We report that polycrystalline cubic-Si3N4 with a spinel structure and low oxygen concentration (<0.5 wt%) shows Vickers hardness of 43 GPa when measured with the indentation load of 10 mN. The hardness decreases with the increase of the indentation load, which can be ascribed to the presence of weak grain boundaries. The high hardness can be well explained by its large shear modulus as predicted by first-principles calculations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)731-733
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Materials Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Apr
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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