This article presents numerical studies on the deformation of particles during dynamic compaction of metal powders. The analysis of the process is based on a micromechanics approach using multiple particle configurations. The material considered is elastoviscoplastic with interparticle friction. Two-dimensional studies on particles in close packed arrangement were carried out using plane strain conditions for deformation and thermal response. The finite element method using an explicit dynamic analysis procedure was used for the simulations. The influence of speed of compaction, strain hardening, strain rate dependency, interparticle friction and size of the powder particles on the final shape and temperature variations within the particles were analyzed. The studies offer useful information on the shape and temperature variations within the particles. The results provide a better understanding of the dynamic compaction process at the micromechanics level. © 1999 American Institute of Physics.