Wear Material Analysis

Nanolytical provides standard materials testing and microstructural analysis for all wear materials. Microstructure will have an affect key performance indicators, material properties, and ultimately on wear performance. We have a range of techniques available to compare and evaluate wear materials across ceramics and carbides, including Dry Sand Rubber Wheel abrasion testing.

Microscopy and Microanalysis

We offer a broad spectrum of microscopy and microanalysis techniques for analysing materials down to

As part of microstructural analysis we offer particle size and volume fraction analysis for a range of materials to ASTM E112 standard.

Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM)

SEM is one of the most versatile imaging tools for looking at a broad spectrum of materials and samples, with a resolution down to 5nm, suitable for broader microstructural characterisation, powder morphology and examination of nano-scale features. Combined with backscatter techniques, Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDS) and elemental mapping, we are able to examine sample homogeneity and infer chemical composition down to <1m scale.

Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM)

TEM is a specialist technique that allows resolution <1nm for nano-particle analysis, particle coatings and crystallographic structure. Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy (STEM) imaging and X-ray analysis further provide compositional sample information.

X-Ray Powder Diffraction (XRD)

We provide a wide range of XRD services, covering simple data collection for in-house data analysis, phase identification, semi-quantitative and quantitative phase analysis, through to Rietveld refinement and structure solution. We are also able to provide a data analysis only service suited to clients with their own XRD unit. We have extensive mineral databases for phase identification through EVA software, and use the Topas Rietveld refinement software for all our data analysis.

X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS)

XPS is a highly sensitive chemical quantification technique used to investigate the surface chemistry for coatings, electrochemical and materials surface information. It is also known as Electron Spectroscopy for Chemical Analysis (ESCA) and can be applied to a broad range of materials where detailed surface chemical information is required. It provides valuable quantitative and chemical state information from the surface of the material being studied. The average depth of analysis for an XPS measurement is approximately 5 nm, and with Ion gun etching depth profiling of the sample is possible.

Chemical Analysis (XRF, ICP-OES/AES)

We provide chemical analysis using XRF and ICP-OES/AES for most sample types.

Particle Size Analysis

We offer wet particle size analysis utilising Mastersizer 3000 dual light source laser diffraction particle size analyser to measure particle size distributions from 10nm up to 3.5mm.

Thermo gravimetric Analysis (TGA)

Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) is an analytical technique used to determine a material's thermal stability and its fraction of volatile components. Based on it thermal degradation profile, it is possible to identify and quantify individual volatile components. We offer TGA analysis to 1200°C and a range of gas atmospheres.

Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC)

Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) is a thermal analysis technique in which the heat flow into or out of a sample is measured as a function of temperature or time. It provides quantitative and qualitative data on endothermic (heat absorption) and exothermic (heat evolution) processes.

DSC analysis is used to measure wide range of material properties, such as melting temperature, heat of fusion, latent heat of melting, reaction energy and temperature, glass transition temperature, crystalline phase transition temperature and energy, precipitation energy and temperature, oxidation behaviour, specific heat capacity and thermal stability.

Density & Porosity

Our AccuPyc II 1340 Helium pycnometer allows us to evaluate a range of density and porosity information about different sample types for both solids, skeletal structures and powders, measuring bulk, apparent, skeletal and true density. For ceramics multiple density measurements provide information about sample porosity. Porosity in ceramics is the key material property that affects other properties such as hardness, fracture toughness, wear rate, thermal stability etc. Ultimately density and porosity information is one of the key performance indicators in ceramic wear and impact applications.

Grain size and volume fraction

We offer a range of grain, particle size and volume fraction analysis techniques. These range from image analysis from optical or electron microscopy to powder particle size analysis using laser diffraction techniques. All grain size analysis is carried out to the ASTM E112 standard.

Materials' failure analysis

We offer a range of materials failure analysis services to suit different industry requirements. The basic service includes testing and a standard interpretative data report. For larger projects we offer consultancy services and site visits. Our primary expertise and experience is in ceramics and we are able to provide a range of services from manufacture improvement, materials properties improvement and cause of failure in use.

Dry Sand Rubber Wheel abrasion testings

A key requirement for suppliers of wear materials to the mining industry is DSRW abrasion test data, which we offer to ASTM G65 standard. Test Method A, 30minutes abrasion time, is the standard for ceramics (Alumina and ZTA), Silicon carbides and some overlay materials, while Test Method B, 10minutes, is more suitable for softer materials. We can also prepare samples, please contact us for a quotation.