News Archive


Thu, 03/19/2020

IMR Test Labs Louisville, Kentucky location has earned accreditation from Pratt & Whitney Group as a materials testing lab.  Click here to view the document.

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National Engineers Week Feature- Phillip Swartzentruber

Thu, 02/20/2020

We’re celebrating “National Engineers Week”, and the tremendous contributions our engineers make to our customers understanding of their materials characterization challenges, by featuring some important members of our engineering team.

Phillip Swartzentruber, PhD is a Failure Analyst and the Chemistry Department Supervisor at IMR’s lab in Louisville, KY.  We recently talked P Swartzentruberabout what drew him into engineering in the first place, how he applies his knowledge to his role at IMR, and what advice he’d have for someone thinking about going into the field.

What got you interested in engineering?

”I was always good in math throughout school, so engineering seemed to be a natural choice for being able to utilize those skills in a career.  When I went to the University of Kentucky, I was initially enrolled in the Mine Engineering program.  It didn’t take long for me to decide working underground was not going to be enjoyable, so I switched to Materials Engineering because of a presentation that was made during orientation.  If you recall, when I graduated in 2009, the economy was taking a big hit.  I decided to continue my education to learn more and make myself more marketable, so I got a PhD.”

What do you like the best about your role at IMR?

“Every day is different.  One of the things that got me interested in materials science was the variety of applications, and the diverse characteristics needed for each of them.  Every time there’s a problem with a customer’s materials, it’s a learning experience for me.  I can apply what I know and identify their problem, and quite often, the solution.”

What advice to you have for young people who are thinking about a career in engineering?

“If you can find someone who is in the field, ask them a lot of questions, but even better- see if you can shadow them for a day.  Do your research, people will tell you what they think you should go into, but look beyond the basic engineering disciplines like chemistry, mechanical, electrical.  There are many specialty areas that are in high demand, so check them out.  In my experience, most people who go into materials science started in another engineering field, but got interested when they found out what an interesting field it is.”

To talk with one of IMR's world-class engineers, scientists or lab technicians, call 888-464-8422 or contact us here.

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National Engineers Week Feature- Chase YurgA-Bell

Wed, 02/19/2020

We at IMR Test Labs rely on our engineers daily for their unique set of testing and analytical skills.  To celebrate “National Engineers Week”, and the tremendous contributions our engineers make to our customers understanding of their materials characterization challenges, IMR is featuring some important members of our engineering team.

Chase Yurga-Bell is a Sr. Engineer at IMR’s Portland lab.  We recently talked about what drew him into engineering in the first place, how he Chase Yurga-Bell-crop-300applies his knowledge to his role at IMR, and what advice he’d have for someone thinking about going into the field.

What got you interested in engineering?

“Both my parents were analytical chemists, so there was always talk about applying science to solving problems.  I thought it was more interesting to take science out of the abstract world, and apply it to solve real world problems.  I felt materials engineering gave me the flexibility to go into many different areas of specialty.  The challenge of figuring out problems of material characterization and failure analysis is a lot of fun, and metallurgy gives me the opportunity to not only identify the source of the problems, but also what corrective measures should be taken to avoid failures and cleanliness issues.”

What do you enjoy most about your engineering role at IMR?

“It’s never the same day to day.  I really enjoy solving the customers puzzle, whether it’s a product failure or a material’s unusual reactions to various environmental, temperature or stress exposures in their operating environment.  Thinking through what testing approach to take to get to the failure’s root cause or what pre-failure symptoms might indicate is fun.  And I really enjoy being able to help our customers find out what has caused their problem, as well as sharing knowledge about how to mitigate those problems in the future.  Having that contact with the customer gives me a great feeling when I have been able to help them solve an important problem.”

Advice to someone thinking about a career in Engineering?

“Don’t get frustrated with how hard college is.  Once you get past the papers, homework, tests, quizzes, projects, etc. you’ll find you already had all the skills you need to do the job.  And don’t be afraid to switch what areas you like to work in.  For example, I did a lot of work detecting impurities on circuit boards.  After a time, I discovered that I preferred working with metal and I made the switch.”

To talk with one of IMR's world-class engineers, scientists or lab technicians, call 888-464-8422 or contact us here.

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Mon, 01/20/2020

LANSING, NY – January 2, 2020 – George Wildridge, Director of Engineering-CWST Analytical Services, was recently awarded the distinguished Curtiss-Wright Technical Fellow designation.   This award recognizes George’s exceptional qualifications and experience in several areas:

  • Technical Expertise
  • Industry Exposure
  • Research Qualifications
  • Decision Making Ability
  • Experience, Education
  • Communications / Coach / Educator

“The fields of material science, engineering and metallurgy have been hallmarks of the service package offered by CWST Analytical Services since its inception,” said Bill DeLaurier, Regional Manager-Analytical Services, “George has played a major role in formalizing, codifying and institutionalizing our knowledge and values.  Analytical Services would not be nearly as successful without George’s continued presence.”

George started his career with IMR Test Labs (IMR became Analytical Services after Curtiss Wright acquisition) in 2002.  He has continually grown in responsibilities by demonstrating his Material Science and Engineering expertise and experience.  DeLaurier also stated, “The easiest and most accurate way to describe George’s leadership capabilities is to realize that he has lead most of Analytical Services largest revenue and strategically critical projects over the past decade.  The success of these programs has enabled us to become one of the leaders in the field of materials testing throughout the U.S. and Asia.”

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Jennifer Breetz, IMR Louisville Quality Manager, Named as Top Young Metal Finishing Industry Professional by National Publication

Fri, 08/03/2018

Jennifer BreetzIf you haven’t seen the latest issue of Products Finishing magazine, you missed seeing Jennifer Breetz, IMR-Louisville’s Quality Manager/Metallurgy and Corrosion Manager. As a result of her work in metallurgical properties and anti-corrosion processes, she has been recognized as one of the top “40 Under 40” young professionals in the finishing industry by the magazine’s editorial board.

This award recognizes the today’s top young talent who are making great strides in shaping the future of the finishing industry. We’re proud of Jennifer, and she’s been an important part of the team since 2011, rising quickly through the lab to positions of greater responsibility. With her extensive experience in the automotive industry, she’s the face of IMR to many of our OEM and Tier 1 customers.

Here's a link to the online version of the story:

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IMR-Suzhou Earns Nadcap Certification for Fatigue Testing

Tue, 07/10/2018

In February 2018, Nadcap audited our fatigue testing equipment, and we earned our certification in June 2018.  Our Fatigue Engineer has extensive fatigue testing experience, as well as laboratory professional training, expert ability in fatigue specimen processing.  Having proved that IMR-Suzhou has improved our fatigue testing facilities, including the high-level vertical polishing equipment, we are proud to announce we have met the requirements of Nadcap and GE for surface residual stress requirements!

The IMR Test Labs-Suzhou laboratory completed the third phase of our expansion project in January 2018, with the introduction of high and low cycle fatigue testing machine. In April, we installed 6 fatigue frames to complete our planned expansion.

IMR Test Labs-Suzhou has fatigue engineers with a rich depth of knowledge and experience, providing material fatigue testing services for you and your products quickly and accurately。Under the long-term effect of variable stress and strain, the fracture phenomenon caused by cumulative damage is called fatigue,IMR Suzhou laboratory can now provide you with a full set of fatigue testing methods, including high cycle fatigue, low cycle fatigue, room temperature and high temperature fatigue performance, K1C, fracture toughness, Da/Dn and more. 

If you need further analysis of the materials tested to failure, our metallographic team has been trained professionally in the areas of fault and destruction modules。With the support of our complete Microscope Laboratory (Optics, Scanning Electron Microscope) and chemical, mechanical and other groups, we can provide a wide variety of testing services for customers.

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IMR Louisville Awarded Class A Lab Status by Daimler Corp

Thu, 08/10/2017

IMR Test Labs- Louisville recently earned the "Class A Laboratory" designation from Daimler Corporation. For any automotive manufacturers or Tier 1 suppliers, this designation represents a high standard of excellence in testing and analytical processes of automotive materials. In addition to our ISO 17025 and A2LA accreditations, the Daimler Corporation certification continues to prove that IMR is a world-class testing facility.

(Photo: A Daimler Corp. joint U.S./ Germany Quality Control Team tour our Louisville lab.  From left to right: Jeff Martin (ZF, US), Peter Aschauer (Daimler, Germany),  Frank Vails (Daimler, US), Jennifer Breetz (IMR), Sandy Mitchell (IMR)

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Mon, 08/07/2017

IMR’s Ithaca lab facility has added to its roster of talented and experienced lab personnel with the hiring of Jaewan Park, M.S. Aeronautical Engineering.

Mr. Park has over 15 years of experience in materials testing, with an emphasis on high temperature cyclic and static fatigue testing of Ceramic Matrix Composites Materials (CMC) and other aerospace materials.

George Wildridge, Director of Engineering at IMR Test Labs said  “In his role as Sr. Engineer for our Nadcap accredited Fatigue Testing Laboratory, Jaewan’s advanced education and hands-on experience in the aerospace industry enables us to leverage his expertise into becoming a sustaining resource for manufacturers and suppliers in that sector.”

While working out of the IMR Ithaca facility, Mr. Park will provide support and expertise to all 5 of IMR’s worldwide test labs.

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IMR Test Labs Receives Recognition for Outstanding Performance from Bechtel Corporation

Tue, 05/23/2017

Curtiss-Wright’s Surface Technologies (CWST) division announced today that its IMR Test Labs-Ithaca facility was recognized for outstanding work on projects by Bechtel’s Nuclear, Security & Environmental global business unit at the Bechtel Supply Chain Recognition awards. The awards recognize subcontractors and suppliers who supported Bechtel‘s work in nuclear power, environmental clean-up, defense, and nuclear security and operations projects during 2016.IMR Test Labs Receives Recognition for Outstanding Performance from Bechtel Corporation

“We could not accomplish what we do without our subcontractors and suppliers,” said Barbara Rusinko, president of Bechtel’s Nuclear, Security & Environmental global business unit. “The work is challenging, highly technical, and is often first-of-a-kind.”

“Our large and diverse team of engineers, scientists, lab techs, and support personnel worked very hard over several years on this complex and technically challenging program,” said IMR’s Joseph Springer. “We were honored to receive this supplier award, which was earned in large part by the collaboration of over 20 very talented material testing professionals.  It is great to see their efforts receive such a high level of recognition”.

IMR is providing formulation, testing, and analysis services to determine the corrosion susceptibility of plant components such as piping, valves, and vessels. The test scope includes over 2000 test coupons spanning the entire range of expected environmental conditions throughout the plant.

Companies were evaluated on multiple factors. They include: overall performance; the ability to deliver quality services/supplies on time; the ability to work collaboratively to meet milestones; and meeting or exceeding project expectations in aspects of safety, construction performance, technical expertise, and environmental compliance. Nominations were reviewed and approved by Bechtel procurement and project managers.   Final recommendations were approved by senior leadership.

Pictured (from left to right): Jim Willman – Bechtel NS&E Manager of Procurement & Contracts, Aaron Kueck- IMR Test Labs Manager of Failure Analysis & Metallurgical Engineering, Don Shuman, IMR Test Labs VP of Sales & Marketing, Barbara Rusinko – President, Bechtel NS&E.

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IMR Test Labs Ithaca, NY Facility Expands Fatigue Testing Capabilities, Adds High Temperature Testing Equipment

Tue, 03/28/2017

Paramus, N.J. March 28, 2017 -- Curtiss-Wright’s Surface Technologies (CWST) division announced today that its IMR Test Labs Ithaca, NY facility has completed an expansion in their Nadcap accredited Fatigue Testing Laboratory which doubles their prior capacity, and enables high temperature fatigue testing up to 1800° F. 

"Our team has worked hard on this installation of the new Servo-Hydraulic frames, doubling our capacity and increasing our elevated temperature and LCF capabilities”, said George Wildridge, Director of Engineering at IMR Test Labs.  “These new fixtures can be used on standard specimens, but more importantly, can be modified to allow for more unique product testing, such as we find in the automotive and aerospace markets. These frames are calibrated to less than 1% of the maximum load cell, giving us maximum load range, and the capability to test a wide range of materials and sizes- from standard specimens to small springs.” 

The Instron units feature high-temperature testing capabilities, replicating the service conditions experienced by turbine blades in gas turbines and jet engines.  This equipment has advanced fatigue-rated load cell technologies, and is ideally suited to low cycle fatigue, high cycle fatigue, fracture mechanics, high temperature testing and ceramics testing.  

For more information about IMR Test Labs, visit:

About Curtiss-Wright Surface Technologies

The CWST worldwide network of 72 facilities provides highly engineered surface treatments and technical services for components in Aerospace, Defense, Power Generation, and other demanding Industrial markets. These services include thermal spray, solid film lubricant, corrosion resistant and parylene coatings, shot and laser peening, and analytical testing services.  For more information about Curtiss-Wright’s Surface Technologies division, visit: 
About Curtiss-Wright Corporation
Curtiss-Wright Corporation is a global innovative company that delivers highly engineered, critical function products and services to the commercial, industrial, defense and energy markets.  Building on the heritage of Glenn Curtiss and the Wright brothers, Curtiss-Wright has a long tradition of providing reliable solutions through trusted customer relationships. The company employs approximately 8,000 people worldwide.  For more information, visit 
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