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One Eighty is Africa’s most ISO 17025:2017 scoped materials and metallurgical testing laboratory. We specialise in a wide range of on-site materials and metallurgical testing and replication.

On-site materials and metallurgical testing and replication is required when a sample from the component cannot be cut and destructive testing is not possible, but there is still a need to characterize the metallurgical properties.

In order to determine the metallurgical properties an area of the component must be ground and polished in situ, treated with an etchant and then a replicate is taken from the prepared area.  This replicate is then taken to the microscope where the microstructure can be characterized as if a sample had been prepared in the laboratory.

Here is an example of the type of image we can achieve with our accredited method of replication.  This shows carbon steel in the quenched and tempered condition, as opposed to the normalized condition.  This is key information about the component that has been analysed.  This result indicates that the steel has high strength as opposed to lower strength in the normalized condition.

The resolution of the replicate is so good that we can image it using an electron microscope at very high magnification.

Replication is used to identify destructive mechanisms such as creep (fracture along the grain boundaries due to heat) and also the presence of stress corrosion cracking in stainless steel, without cutting a sample.  It can be used to identify sigma phase formation in duplex stainless steels which may have been exposed to heat that it is not designed for.

Replication together with on-site hardness testing and handheld XRF can enable to classification of a material grade so that the mechanical properties and other physical properties can be determined from the standards on these materials.

Replication is used therefore to identify the heat treatment condition of a material, or to identify a failure mechanism.

See One Eighty’s list of ISO 17025:2017-accredited materials and metallurgical tests and non-accredited metallurgical tests and advanced materials tests.

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