This research was devoted to studying the influence of the taper angle on the micro-compression of micro-pillars fabricated from near-amorphous and nanocrystalline Mo-B-C coatings. A series of micro-pillars with a taper angle between 4-14° was fabricated by focused ion beam technique. The deformation mechanism was found to be dependent on the taper and, also, on the crystallinity of the coating. In order to obtain correct values of yield strength and Young's modulus, three empirical models of stress correction were experimentally tested, and the results were compared with nanoindentation measurements. It was shown that the average stress correction model provided comparable results with nanoindentation for the yield strength for taper angles up to ~10°. On the other hand, the average radius or area model gave the most precise results for Young's modulus if the taper angle was <10°.
Keywords: Mo-B-C coatings; micro-compression; micro-pillars; stress-strain; taper angle.