From the time the first hand-scratched artwork appeared on a cave wall Hertzian fractures have held a partnership with mankind. Lithic blades and points used these features of physics to sharpen tools for chores in family life, in hunting and intimes of war. Generally called choncoidal fractures in archaeological circles today, early man knapped segment after segment to create razor-sharp biface arrowheads, scrapers and other tools.Hertzian fractures have been studied extensively to determine the results of their creation. Forensic experts study ballistic processes at crime scenes. 

The armor industry calculates the reactions of materials during their formation. NASA studies their creation in windshields on spacecraft to protect those who float among the stars. And, Hertzian fractures are responsible for our ability to obtain the oil that we use to power our world since they are the cutting force created by drill bits deep below the surface of the Earth. They can be a friend to mankind or an enemy-- if it is possible for an inanimate object to be either. Yet little has been published listing the nomenclature for constitution, physicalities and processes tha tform on and around these Hertzian features; mega, macro, micro.

This glossary is an attempt to collect data from varied industries, fields and disciplines to provide a starting point for a cross reference of information. Many terms and elements are still hypothetical, but logic suggests that physics will agree with these conclusions in further tests. Additions and suggestions are encouraged. Feedback and input are invited. Please send comments and information to
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A.T. Dowd Research
Hertzian Fractures and Related Terms - A Glossary by James Byous
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