This paper describes the relationship between Rockwell C hardness and elastic-plastic material constants by using finite element analyses. Finite element Rockwell C hardness analyses were carried out to study the effects of friction coefficient and elastic-plastic material constants on the hardness. The friction coefficient and Young’s modulus had no influence on the hardness but the inelastic materials constants, yield stress, and strain hardening coefficient and exponent, had a significant influence on the hardness. A new equation for predicting the hardness was proposed as a function of yield stress and strain hardening coefficient and exponent. The equation evaluated the hardness within a ±5% difference for all the finite element and experimental results. The critical thickness of specimen and critical distance from specimen edge in the hardness testing was also discussed in connection with JIS and ISO standards.

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