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Materials performance and validation for additive manufacture
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Materials Performance and Validation

TWI has a long history of conducting mechanical tests for companies from every industry sector, and possesses extensive facilities suitable for testing and validating parts made using additive manufacturing (AM).

Our AM part testing services include UKAS-accredited tests satisfying various standards and full-scale bespoke component testing in a range of environments. We can advise you on the type of testing required, take care of specimen preparation, and provide detailed interpretation of results.

We can adapt or devise new test regimes to suit your needs and have constructed custom test rigs and unique facilities that enable mechanical tests to be carried out in environments that reflect challenging service conditions, including high temperatures and pressures and aggressive gases and fluids.

We are also a respected contributor to various British and international standards relating to fatigue and fracture. Ultimately, our status as a respected authority in testing technologies and many years of experience mean you can depend on us to deliver assurance that your AM components are up to the job.

Benefits of mechanically testing AM parts with TWI

  • Structural integrity validation and assurance of a new material or component before placing it into service. 
  • Custom test facilities that can accommodate a range of component geometries, loading conditions, environments and failure parameters – our aim is to replicate in-service conditions as closely as possible.
  • Multidisciplinary expert approach to combine material testing results, perform numerical modelling and carry out engineering critical assessments (ECAs) in order to reduce conservatism and improve accuracy. This often results in significant savings in costs, time and material.

Test types 

With expertise and equipment covering every mechanical test type, we can select, combine and adapt test methods specifically for your component and its intended service. Test types include the following:

  • Tensile and compression 
  • Dynamic (high-speed) tensile testing
  • High-temperature tensile testing (up to 1200°C)
  • Creep testing
  • Shear testing
  • Charpy testing
  • Pellini testing
  • High- and low-cycle fatigue 
  • Fatigue endurance testing (axial, bending, rotating bending)
  • Constant and variable amplitude loading
  • Fatigue crack growth rate testing
  • Fracture toughness testing (single-point and R-curve in terms of CTOD, K and J at a range of temperatures)
  • Full-scale testing (wide plate testing, pressure testing, bend testing)
  • Bespoke testing of large, small or complex components 

Many of the above can be performed in gaseous or liquid environments that reflect a wide range of service conditions:

  • High- and low-temperature testing (cryogenic, ambient and elevated temperature)
  • Air, seawater, sour (H2S-containing) solutions and a range of other corrosive environments
  • Pressure (internal or external pressure for cylindrical components, in addition to static or cyclic axial/bend loading)
  • High-pressure pure hydrogen

In addition to mechanical testing, we offer related services including non-destructive testing and characterisation, numerical modelling and support relating to standards and qualification.

For more details of how we can help your business, contact us.