Dynamic indentation of an elastic-plastic half-space by a rigid sphere was studied with the finite element method. A parametric analysis was performed to examine the effects of indentation velocity and yield strength of the half-space material on dynamic contact deformation. Velocity effects are discussed in the context of simulation results of global and local contact parameters, such as mean contact pressure, contact area, and equivalent plastic strain. The evolution of deformation as the material response transitions from elastic to fully-plastic deformation during dynamic contact is interpreted in light of numerical results. This study elucidates the effect of dynamic contact loading on the deformation behavior of elastic-plastic materials for a wide range of length scales where a continuum mechanics description holds.

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