“ ‘Smaller is stronger.’ Nanostructured materials such as thin films, nanowires, nanoparticles, bulk nanocomposites, and atomic sheets can withstand non-hydrostatic (e.g., tensile or shear) stresses up to a significant fraction of their ideal strength without inelastic relaxation by plasticity or fracture. Large elastic strains, up to ∼10%, can be generated by epitaxy or by external loading on small-volume or bulk-scale nanomaterials and can be spatially homogeneous or inhomogeneous. This leads to new possibilities for tuning the physical and chemical properties of a material, such as electronic, optical, magnetic, phononic, and catalytic properties, by varying the six-dimensional elastic strain as continuous variables. By controlling the elastic strain field statically or dynamically, a much larger parameter space opens up for optimizing the functional properties of materials.“
– Cited from: Ju Li, Zhiwei Shan, and Even Ma, MRS Bulletin, volume 39, pages 108–114 (2014)
For example, diamond is the hardest material in nature, but the bulk form of it has a low ductility (i.e., it cannot be deformed to a high strain without fracture). Recently, researchers have found that extremely large elastic tensile strain (up to 9.7%) can be achieved in micro-fabricated diamond bridges. This is of particular importance as such deep elastic strain engineered diamond may enable diamond-based electronic and optoelectronic devices that have extraordinary performance.
 Stress Sensitivity Origin of Extended Defects Production Under Coupled Irradiation and Mechanical Loading, Miao He, Yang Yang, Fei Gao, and Yue Fan, Acta Materialia, (2023), 118758.
 Ion-beam radiation-induced Eshelby transformations: The mean and variance in hydrostatic and shear residual stresses, Yongchao Chen, Qing-Jie Li, Alexander D. O’Brien, Yang Yang, Qi He, David A. Bloore, Joost J. Vlassak, Ju Li, Extreme Mechanics Letters, (2023), 59, 101970.
 Achieving large uniform tensile elasticity in microfabricated diamond, Chaoqun Dang†, Jyh-Pin Chou†, Bing Dai†, Chang-Ti Chou†, Yang Yang, Rong Fan, Weitong Lin, Fanling Meng, Alice Hu, Jiaqi Zhu, Jiecai Han, Andrew M. Minor, Ju Li, Yang Lu, Science, 371, 76–78 (2021)