A rigid body is an idealization because even the strongest material deforms slightly when a force is applied. Elasticity is the field of physics that studies the relationships between solid body deformations and the forces that cause them.

In general, an elastic modulus is the ratio of stress to strain. Young's modulus, the bulk modulus, and the shear modulus describe the response of an object when subjected to tensile, compressional, and shear stresses, respectively. When an object such as a wire or a rod is subjected to a tension, the object's length increases. Young's modulus is defined as the ratio of tensile stress and tensile strain. Tensile stress is a measure of the deformation that causes stress. Its definition is the ratio of tensile force (F) and the cross‐sectional area normal to the direction of the force (A). Units of stress are newtons per square meter (N/m 2).

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