A finite element analysis of the indentation of an elastic-perfectly plastic half-space by a rigid sphere was performed for a wide range of material properties. The post-yield deformation behavior was found to consist of four deformation regimes, namely linear elastic-plastic, non-linear elastic-plastic, transient fully-plastic, and steady-state fully-plastic deformation. The boundaries of these deformation regimes were determined numerically in terms of elastic-plastic material properties. The deformation behavior in different regimes was examined in the context of finite element results showing the evolution of subsurface plasticity for different material properties.

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