Nanoindentation has been used to investigate the elastoplastic behavior of Hg0.7Cd0.3Te prepared by molecular beam epitaxy. It was found that Hg0.7Cd0.3Te had a modulus of elasticity of similar to 50 GPa and hardness of similar to 0.66 GPa. The HgCdTe response to nanoindentation was found to be purely elastic for low loads and developed into similar to 10% elastic and similar to 90% plastic response for higher-load indentation exhibiting significant amounts of creep. The onset of plasticity has been observed to be marked by discontinuities or "pop-in" events in the indenter load-penetration curves at sheer stresses of similar to 1.8 GPa, and has been correlated with the homogeneous nucleation and propagation of dislocations. (c) 2005 American Institute of Physics.