Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Materials Testing Techniques

LEVEL 03 - Years 2, 3, 4 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Metallurgy and Materials Engineering

DESCRIPTION This study-unit gives students hands-on experience in a number of materials' testing and characterisation techniques.

Tensile testing: Standards covering tensile testing; tensile test procedure, information derived from the test, standard test specimen for bar and flat plate. Practical session involving tensile testing of medium carbon steel heat treated at various conditions including: annealing, normalizing and hardening and tempering.

Hardness Measurements: Type of hardness measurement: scratch, indentation, rebound, Measurement scales, Hardness of ceramics, specific methods for measuring various products including tablets, paper, rock, ceramics. Microhardness, Use of microhardness profiles, Nanohardness measurement. Practical sessions using Jominy hardness test to measure hardenability of a given steels.

Optical Microscopy: Sample selection- location and orientation, mounting, grinding, polishing and etching techniques. Grain size measurement, measurement of microstructural features. Interpreting microstructures. Acquisition of supporting evidence.

Fatigue testing: Standards controlling fatigue testing, importance of surface finish; effect of surface defects and stresses; Various test conditions, significance of endurance limit and its implication in design.

Impact Testing: Different types of impact tests and corresponding test samples, notched and unnotched samples, information derived from such tests, effect of temperature, Impact test procedure. Ductile and brittle materials, respective fractographs. Practical session involving impact testing of different materials and relating values to respective fractographs.

Scanning Electron Microscope: principal of electron microscope, resolution, depth of field, signals emitted from different parts of the electron beam interaction volume including secondary and back scattering electrons, sample preparation, sample conductivity, Wavelength-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (WDS), Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), fractography. Practical session involving imaging of fractured surfaces and characterisation of some micrscopic features.

XRD: Principles of XRD, X-Ray tubes, qualitative analysis of XRD data, reference pattern, effect displacement errors, K-alpha1 and K-alpha 2 peaks, peak intensity, Quantitative analysis of XRD data. Shift in diffraction peaks position, diffraction peak width, qualitative measurements using published reference intensity ratio (RIR). Practical sessions involving characterisation of a martensitic stainless steel.

Study-unit Aims:

In this study-unit the tutor shall give a brief theoretical insight of the major materials' testing methods highlighting the strengths and limitations of each. This shall be enforced through a series of practical sessions that will expose the student to a number of materials tests and characterisation techniques.

It is the intent to make students appreciate what information can be gathered from materials' tests and how data / information gathered from different tests can serve to substantiate or otherwise results attained from one specific test.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Select a material test that will confirm or otherwise, the suitability of that material for a given application;
- Specify the appropriate tests samples needed for a given material test;
- Carry out the materials' tests on his own or with minimal guidance;
- Interpret results acquired from materials' tests;
- Write professional reports, summarizing and interpreting results from materials' tests.

2. Skills:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Develop written communication skills;
- Manage time effectively, prioritising tasks and developing the able-to-work-to-deadlines;
- Solve problems;
- Analyse data;
- Anticipate and prevent problems;
- Conduct a literature search;
- Understand and interpret messages;
- Demonstrate professionalism;
- Develop initiative / self-motivation.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

1. ASM Handbook Committee. (1997). ASM Handbook Volume 8 - Materials Testing. USA, ASM International.
2. Ferrante, L. (1994). Handbook of Advanced Materials Testing, CRC Press.
3. Cullity, B.D. and Stock S.R. (2013) Elements of X-Ray Diffraction. Pearson Education.
4. Holloway, P.H. and Vaidyanathan, P.N. (2009) Characterisation of Metals and Alloys. New York, Momentum Press.

ADDITIONAL NOTES Pre-Requisite Study-unit: MME3211

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Practical

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment SEM2 No 100%

LECTURER/S Maurice Grech

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.