Nanostructure Fracturing: Brittle-to-Ductile Transition in Uniaxial Compression of Silicon Pillars at Room Temperature (Adv. Funct. Mater. 15/2009)



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On page 2439, F. Östlund et al. report on an interesting effect observed during the compression of sub-micrometer silicon pillars; a critical diameter separates pillars that are observed to crack from pillars that exhibit metal-like ductility. This observation allows for the development of a quantitative method for measuring the fracture toughness of such structures, which can be used to predict and explain small-volume fracture behavior.