IMR Test Labs has grown into one of the world's leading additive manufacturing materials testing labs in the world. Our multi-disciplinary approach, consisting of chemical analysis, mechanical testing and metallurgical evaluation enables us to offer a "one-stop" testing hub for everything from raw materials to finished products. Watch our video to be introduced to our various testing departments and the methods they employ .
Leveraging our extensive experience in providing testing and analyses for additive manufacturers and their suppliers, we've compiled a comprehensive guide that delivers real-world information that can be used to determine what tests are needed to determine your materials characteristics.
While the rapid growth of additive manufacturing (AM) technology has helped engineers in many industries create innovative new component designs, the unusual nature of the necessary raw materials and the resulting printed structures has created signiﬁcant materials testing challenges.
With new frontiers of complexity, materials, and applications, many additive manufacturing (AM) challenges are being overcome through the use of materials testing and analysis. This starts with the need for well characterized raw materials such as powders, pastes, and wires. SLS powders especially need continual testing due to the need to reuse unsintered powder without aﬀecting the end product.
For example, in testing the raw powder's chemical structure, these are some of the tests that can be applied:
ICP-Atomic Emission Spectroscopy
Combustion and Inert Gas Fusion
C, S, N, O, H
The quality of the finished part requires the analysis of a wide array of properties, based not only on the parts application, but the AM process being used as well. These are some of the tests used to measure a finished product's mechanical properties:
- Tensile - Yield - Elongation
- Rotating Beam Fatigue
- Fracture Toughness
Due to the exponential growth of additive manufacturing over the last several years, IMR Test Labs has invested in additional equipment, technology and experienced technicians to meet our customer’s needs.
We’ve expanded our capabilities in raw material characterization and ﬁnished product metal testing & analysis to help manufacturers quickly and accurately make important evaluations in their products design, development and production phases. IMR's increased eﬃciencies and dedicated resources to help our AM customers get quicker turnaround on quotes and jobs.
To download the complete version of our eBook "Materials Testing for the Additive Manufacturing Industry", click here
IMR Test Labs Louisville location has been approved by the Pratt & Whitney Group as a materials testing lab. Jennifer Breetz, IMR-Louisville Quality Manager, said "This approval from Pratt & Whitney will enable us to accomodate materials testing for several more codes than we had in the past. These include Chemical Analysis, RTT, ETT, Stress Rupture, Hardness, Charpy Impact, Microstructure, Grain Size, Alpha Case, Heat Treat, Semi-Quant Analysis."read more
When people think of additive manufacturing, many conjure up an image of high-intensity laser beams melting shapes into a bed of thinly layered metal powder. While this is the best and most appropriate method for many types of products and parts, it's only one of many that additive manufacturers have at their disposal. To decide on which is the best method, you have to start at the end: whatever the part or product's final application will be.read more
One client provided us with a pair of bellows that had cracks in the welds. Our mounting, polishing, and metallographic analysis of four sections from each assembly revealed that all eight locations failed to meet the customer-supplied fillet angle requirements.
Six of the eight locations failed to meet weld size requirements. We also found nearly invisible cracks originating at the weld root in areas where no visible cracks could be seen.
Since there were no other signs of stress that could be linked to other sources, it became clear that undersized welds were the root cause of the problem. With optical stereoscopes and a scanning electron microscope (SEM), we quickly confirmed our findings. For additional examples, download our Failure Analysis Case Stude Guide.
We received two sections of 304 stainless steel pipe along with samples of insulation, strapping, two process fluids, and a water sample from the DI system used to mix the fluids for failure analysis.
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