Approach between two deformable micro-spheres in the presence of adhesion is sometimes accompanied by discontinuous change of the surface profile at the narrow region near their summits (jump-in phenomenon or neck formation). The main goal of the current work is to show that neck formation can involve local plastification. The adhesive traction acting on the sphere’s surface is evaluated by the Lennard-Jones potential. The theoretical strength rather than the engineering yield strength of the material is used in the von Mises (VM) local yielding criterion. The results show that adhesion between deformable micro-spheres may cause elastic to plastic transition during the neck formation for specific combinations of geometrical and physical properties of the spheres.

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