A study was made by the Bureau of Mines of the penetration of selected granular materials in an unconfined state by wedge-shaped tools having dimensions comparable with the dimensions of the particles composing the materials. The output force for larger particles fluctuated radically. A custom-designed integrator was used to obtain work as a function of depth of penetration in the form of smooth curves. The influence of wedge angle, depth of penetration, penetration rate, entry angle, compaction state, and particle size on the force required and the work performed was ascertained. Empirical equations describing force and work as a function of penetration were obtained for each set of experiments.