Effect of aqueous-based mechanical polishing on the nanoindentation response of borosilicate glasses Academic Article uri icon


  • 2019 The American Ceramic Society and Wiley Periodicals, Inc When attempting to measure material properties by sampling near-surface volumes with techniques like nanoindentation, careful consideration of the state of the surface compared to the bulk is paramount for valid characterization. The process of surface planarization of glass in preparation for analysis is no exception. Water's general reactivity with silicate glasses has been well-established, but under the typical conditions for mechanical polishing, the usual practical assumption is that the potential effects on measured mechanical properties are insignificant due to the short period of glass-water interaction and the non-extreme corrosive environment. On the contrary, in this study, it is shown that the act of polishing certain borosilicate glass compositions in an aqueous environment directly affects the nanomechanical response to several micrometers, reducing the measured elastic modulus and hardness by ~20% and ~35%, respectively. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) are used to confirm the formation of an altered, hydrated surface layer.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Hackett, B. L., Wereszczak, A. A., & Pharr, G. M.

citation count

  • 6

complete list of authors

  • Hackett, Benjamin L||Wereszczak, Andrew A||Pharr, George M

publication date

  • July 2019