AbstractThe application of a gradient extended theory to the computation of the mechanical response of a single crystalline sub-micron gold, which is the part of nano-composites, is in the focus of the contribution. The research takes into account the dependence of the macroscopic behavior of a crystalline material on the size and morphology of the grains, the volume fraction of different phases, and the subgrain material modeling. A gradient hardening contribution is included into the crystal plasticity model in order to study the influence of the grain size on the response of single crystalline. It is assumed that the grain boundaries act as barriers to plastic deformation. The highly coupled system of equations is solved by applying a dual mixed finite element algorithm. Numerical results of the sub-micron gold crystal deformation under cyclic shear loading are presented. The gradient effect in the deformation field is discussed.