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  • Hardness Testing

    Hardness TestingHardness testing assesses the impact of the metal or alloy to permanent indentation, and the depth or size of the indent is measured to determine a hardness value. There are several different hardness tests and we use the Brinell, Vickers and Rockwell methods.

    Magnetic Flux Leakage (MFL)

    Magnetic Flux Leakage is a magnetic method of nondestructive testing that is used to detect corrosion and pitting in steel structures. We most commonly chose this method to test pipelines. The basic principle is that a powerful magnet is used to magnetize the steel. At areas where there is corrosion or missing metal, the magnetic field "leaks" from the steel. In an MFL tool, a magnetic detector is placed between the poles of the magnet to detect the leakage field. Analysts interpret the chart recording of the leakage field to identify damaged areas and to estimate the depth of metal loss.

    Impact Testing

    Impact testing measures the material’s ability to absorb energy when fractured at high velocity. This gives an indication of the ‘toughness’ of the metal and two methods are usually employed for impact testing, Charpy or Izod.

    Tensile Testing

    Tensile testing, or tension testing, is used to determine the behaviour of the metal when it is being pulled. Tensile testing can measure yield strength, proof strength and ultimate tensile strength. We have a range of tensile testing machines and can apply loads from a few newtons to 1,000 kilo newtons, and test up to 600°c.

    Ultrasonic Testing (UT)

    Ultrasonic testing is a family of non-destructive testing techniques based on the propagation of ultrasonic waves in the object or material tested. In most common UT applications, very short ultrasonic pulse-waves with center frequencies ranging from 0.1-15 MHz, and occasionally up to 50 MHz, are transmitted into materials to detect internal flaws or to characterize materials.

  • Open-die Drop Forging

    In open-die forging, a hammer strikes and deforms the workpiece, which is placed on a stationary anvil. Open-die forging gets its name from the fact that the dies (the surfaces that are in contact with the workpiece) do not enclose the workpiece, allowing it to flow except where contacted by the dies. The operator therefore needs to orient and position the workpiece to get the desired shape. The dies are usually flat in shape, but some have a specially shaped surface for specialized operations. For example, a die may have a round, concave, or convex surface or be a tool to form holes or be a cut-off tool. Open-die forgings can be worked into shapes which include discs, hubs, blocks, shafts (including step shafts or with flanges), sleeves, cylinders, flats, hexes, rounds, plate, and some custom shapes. Open-die forging lends itself to short runs and is appropriate for art smithing and custom work. In some cases, open-die forging may be employed to rough-shape ingots to prepare them for subsequent operations. Open-die forging may also orient the grain to increase strength in the required direction.

    Impression-die Forging

    In impression-die forging, the metal is placed in a die resembling a mold, which is attached to an anvil. Usually, the hammer die is shaped as well. The hammer is then dropped on the workpiece, causing the metal to flow and fill the die cavities. The hammer is generally in contact with the workpiece on the scale of milliseconds. Depending on the size and complexity of the part, the hammer may be dropped multiple times in quick succession. Excess metal is squeezed out of the die cavities, forming what is referred to as "flash". The flash cools more rapidly than the rest of the material; this cool metal is stronger than the metal in the die, so it helps prevent more flash from forming. This also forces the metal to completely fill the die cavity. After forging, the flash is removed.

    Upset Forging

    Upset forging increases the diameter of the workpiece by compressing its length. Based on number of pieces produced, this is the most widely used forging process. A few examples of common parts produced using the upset forging process are engine valves, couplings, bolts, screws, and other fasteners.

  • Centreless Grinding

    Centerless grinding is a machining process that uses abrasive cutting to remove material from a workpiece. Centerless grinding differs from centered grinding operations in that no spindle or fixture is used to locate and secure the workpiece; the workpiece is secured between two rotary grinding wheels, and the speed of their rotation relative to each other determines the rate at which material is removed from the workpiece.

    Deep Hole Drilling (DHD)

    Deep hole drilling is a residual stress measurement technique used to measure locked-in and applied stresses in engineering materials and components. DHD is a semi-destructive mechanical strain relaxation (MSR) technique, which seeks to measure the distribution of stresses along the axis of a drilled reference hole. The process is unique in its ability to measure residual stresses at a microscopic level with a penetration of over 750 millimetres (30 in), without total destruction of the original component. DHD is considered deep in comparison to other hole drilling techniques such as centre hole drilling.

  • Annealing

    Annealing, in metallurgy and materials science, is a heat treatment that alters the physical and sometimes chemical properties of a material to increase its ductility and reduce its hardness, making it more workable. It involves heating a material above its recrystallization temperature, maintaining a suitable temperature, and then cooling.In annealing, atoms migrate in the crystal lattice and the number of dislocations decreases, leading to a change in ductility and hardness. As the material cools it recrystallizes. For many alloys, including carbon steel, the crystal grain size and phase composition, which ultimately determine the material properties, are dependent on the heating, and cooling rate. Hot working or cold working after the annealing process alter the metal structure, so further heat treatments may be used to achieve the properties required. With knowledge of the composition and phase diagram, heat treatment can be used to adjust between harder and more brittle, to softer and more ductile.

    Hardening and Tempering

    The two major processes of hardening and tempering can be broken down into four major steps. First, a piece of steel is heated gradually until it reaches a temperature above the steel's critical temperature. The steel is then quenched, usually in water or oil (though other quenches, such as brine or sodium hydroxide solutions, are sometimes used to achieve a particular result). The steel is now at that given alloy's maximum hardness, but as discussed above, also brittle. At this point, tempering is usually performed to achieve a more useful balance of hardness and toughness. The steel is gradually heated until the desired temper colours are drawn, generally at a temperature significantly lower than the steel's critical point. Different colours in the temper spectrum reflect different balances of hardness to toughness, so different temper levels are appropriate for different applications. The steel is then re-quenched to 'fix' the temper at the desired level. A talented smith or metalworker can fine-tune the performance of a steel tool or item to precisely what is required based solely on careful observation of temper colours. A visual representation of this process may make the concept easier to understand.

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Room 2014, 20th Floor, Building C1, Xuhui International Plaza, No. 222 of Naodong East Road, Changsha, Hunan, China
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