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What is Mechanical Properties Testing?

What is Mechanical Properties Testing?


When you are taking a flight home or taking an elevator up a building, the engineering and testing that has been performed behind the scenes are probably not the first things that comes to your mind.



The bolts and rivets that holds the plane’s panels together, the composite materials that form those panels, and the steel wires that holds the elevator are just a few of the many examples that needs to be tested extensively. Mechanical properties testing is the general term used for such tests, and conducted to prove that components or systems meet the requirements of regulatory agencies and to prove that the components are safe to use and do what they are designed to do.



Mechanical properties testing covers a wide variety of materials from rubbers, ceramics to metallic and composite parts. These tests can be conducted according to an internationally recognized ASTM or ISO test standard, or custom profile defined by the customer. The most common test methods are uniaxial tensile testing, uniaxial compression testing and shear testing.



These tests are usually performed by a Universal Test System and utilizing various types of fixtures, that interface the UTS with the unit under test. Tensile and compression tests are performed by gripping a material by the ends and either pull (tensile) or push (compression) until the material fails, as shown below[1]. Shear testing is more of a “sliding” test, where the opposing faces of a material or system are pulled in opposite directions.





No matter which test is performed, the force and how much it was pulled or pushed (displacement or extension) are typically measured to define the physical properties of a material. We provide all of these mechanical tests for our customers, with the possibility of testing these materials under different temperatures ranging from -155℉ to +600℉. Our UTS system is capable of applying loads up to 67,000 lbs. For more details click here.

For example, one of our customers was having an issue with a cast aluminum material, and we have performed uniaxial tensile test until failure, as shown below, to measure the ultimate strength of their material.





Below figure demonstrates a shear test where two test units were attached a stationary fixture, where they were bolted to a moving fixture in the middle. The middle fixture was pulled up to characterize the properties of this elastomeric mount to ensure they were built in accordance with specifications. This test method is commonly referred to as double-lap shear test, where two test units are tested at the same time.





We specialize in room temperature and temperature controlled mechanical testing. Please contact us for your testing needs.

[1] https://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/stress-strain-d_950.html

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