Services / Plastic Testing

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Microlab deploys the State-of-Art Metal Testing Equipments

At Microlab, we understand that testing is crucial to the life cycle of plastics (Polymers) from the raw material stage to the finished products.

Preliminary

Physical and mechanical testing of polymers ensures that the material complies with industry specifications. The test requirements and solutions are specific to the respective stage, end-users, or applications: from aerospace, automotive, consumer, medical, and defense industries, amongst others. Microlab brings advanced techniques and methods to test various product types and additives. Our test teams have an in-depth understanding of the capabilities and limitations of materials, which is crucial to suppliers, manufacturers, and product developers on every level of the polymer industry supply chain.

Preliminary Tests

Methods for Identification of Plastics

Analytical Technique

Analytical Techniques for in-depth polymer analysis with the extensive use of rubbers, plastics, and other materials have impacted modern life.

Spectroscopy Identification of Plastics by FTIR

FTIR is a powerful tool for identifying the types of chemical bonds in organic and inorganic molecules by producing an IR absorption spectrum. Our equipment is Thermo Scientific Nicolet iS50 with Attenuated Total Reflectance iD7 (ATR).

Instrument details

Applications

Infrared spectrum is useful in identifying the functional groups like -OH, -CN, -CO, -CH, -NH2

We have our procedures done based on standardization.

ASTM E 1252: Standard Practice for General Techniques for obtaining infrared spectra for ‘Qualitative Analysis’

Physical properties

Physical testing is an essential part of research and production processes for polymers. Microlab conducts mechanical, physical, thermal, rheological, and other physical properties of various types of polymers.

Density/ Specific Gravity

The specific gravity or relative density of a solid is a property that can be measured conveniently to identify material and to follow physical changes in a sample.

Ash content

Ash content analysis helps in the quantification of the residual polymeric content rather than a qualitative comparison of components present in the polymer.

Procedures are done based on standard test methods

Mechanical Property

We Determine the mechanical properties of plastics like

Tensile Properties

"Tensile testing is an important material test to select a specific material for an application, quality control, and to predict how a material will react to varying forces.” Tensile properties help us understand the resistance of the specimen to the force that tends to pull apart and leads to breakage

Properties that could be determined are

  • Tensile Strength
  • Elongation at break
  • Tensile modulus

We have our procedures done based on standardization.

  • ASTM D638: is a testing standard that ascertains the tensile properties of a plastic material
 

IZOD Impact Test

Impact strength (IZOD) in Plastics: The ability of a material or article to withstand shocks. Impact strength data is the quantitative presentation of the material's toughness.

  • TYPE – Pendulum Impact
  • This Helps us obtain – Impact Energy, Impact Strength

We have our procedures done based on standardization.

  • ASTM D 256-06: Standard test methods for determining the Izod pendulum impact.
 

Hardness property

Hardness is a surface property. It is the resistance of a material to indentation, penetration, scratches, deformation and permanent deformation.

We have our procedures done based on standardization.

  • ASTM D 2240: Standard test method for rubbery property -Durometer Hardness.
  • ASTM D758: Standard test method for Rockwell Hardness of Plastics and Electrical insulating materials.
 

Rheological Property

Metlflow index

MFI is a measurement that helps us understand the rate of extrusion which can be defined as the mass of polymer in grams flowing in 10 minutes.

MFI provides information pertaining to

  • Uniformity of flow
  • Quality check
  • Differentiation in polymer grades

We have our procedures done based on standardization.

  • ASTM D 1238-04: Standard Test Method for Melt Flow Rates of Thermoplastics by Extrusion Plastometer.
  • ISO 1133: Determination of the melt mass-flow rate (MFR) and melt volume flow rate (MVR) of thermoplastics
 

Thermal Property

Heat Distortion Temperature (HDT)

HDT is a relative measure of a material's ability to perform for a short time at elevated temperatures while supporting a load. It gives an indication of what temperature materials start to "soften" when exposed to a fixed load at elevated temperatures.

  • ATSM D 648-07: Standard test method for Deflection Temperature of plastics under flexural load.

Flammability

Flammability is the ability of a material to burn or ignite, causing a fire. Under certain applications plastics may reach a point of deformation, melting or ignition due to high temperatures. To limit this failure, the flammability property is checked to give an idea about the material selection. The burning behavior of plastics is not just a material characteristic; it also helps with the design.

  • ASTM D 5132: Horizontal Burning Rate of Polymeric Materials Used in Occupant Compartments of Motor Vehicles.
  • ISO 3795: Determination of burning behavior of interior materials

Thermal Conductivity

Thermal conductivity is an important property when designing materials as insulators and in heat exchanger applications. At Microlab, we can also test the thermal conductivity at different temperatures (from -500 C to 2000 C) on liquids, powders, and solids. The application can extend to batteries, fluids, building materials, explosives, lighting, etc. Microlab is capable of two types of equipment: the steady-state measurement can give precise values, and the MTPS (Modified Transient Plane Source) instrument can provide values within seconds.

The standard test method for analysis follows ASTM C518, ASTM D7984, and ISO 8301

Surface Property

Abrasion Resistance

Resistance to abrasion is defined as the ability of a material to withstand mechanical action such as rubbing, scraping, or erosion. Taber abrasion performed on plastics involves abrading wheels running on the surface of the plastic. The observation of the test is a measurement of the haze difference or weight loss before and after the abrasion.

  • ASTM D 1044: Resistance of Transparent Plastics to Surface Abrasion by the Taber Abraser.

Soiling/Wear Resistance

Soiling resistance is the ability of a material to withstand the contact of any material in everyday use. Soil-resistant materials will require less frequent or severe cleaning, making them far easier to maintain. Automotive materials experience mild abrasive actions from users. The application is not too severe which could cause abrasive damage to the test piece. The method is gentle and thus correlates with day-to-day applications. Not only plastics but even textiles and leathers can also be tested.

Scratch Resistance

Painted plastics can be assessed with scratch resistance by variable loading of stylus movement for a constant distance. The critical load for making a scratch can be determined.

  • ISO 1518-2: Determination of scratch resistance Part 2: Variable-loading method

Optical Property

Refraction index

The Refractive Index determines how much the path of light is bent or refracted when entering a material. This is a characteristic value for each material. The value of the refractive index in plastics can be used to assess the purity of the material in different zones. The refractive index value for plastics might change in the presence of any contaminants

  • ASTM E 1347: Color and color-difference Measurement by Colorimetry
  • ASTM D 2244: Calculation of Color Differences from Instrumentally Measured Color Coordinates

Color test

Evaluating the color of the plastics is done with a high degree of accuracy using a Colorimeter. Colorimeter quantifies the color attributes which helps the processors to reproduce the accurate color and maintain color consistency. Colorimeter quantifies the color attributes which helps the processors to reproduce the accurate color and maintain color consistency. Automotive materials experience mild abrasive actions from users. The application is not too severe which could cause abrasive damage to the test piece. The method is gentle and thus correlates with day-to-day applications. Not only plastics but even textiles and leathers can also be tested.

  • ASTM E 1347: Color and color-difference Measurement by Colorimetry
  • ASTM D 2244: Calculation of Color Differences from Instrumentally Measured Color Coordinates

Gloss test

Gloss is the property that shows the amount of light reflected from the surface of a material in a specular direction. Gloss characterizes the reflective or shiny nature of plastic material. The gloss is responsible for the lustrous appearance of plastic films. This property is used to solve issues on the surface finish which can be correlated with molding conditions of plastics.

Weathering

Xenon weathering

Xenon weathering test chambers use Xenon-arc lamps that produce light wavelength range that covers UV, Visible Light and IR. This exactly simulates the exposure to direct sunlight or filters of window glass sunlight as well as rain or dew.
Product degradation study can be done at various controlled conditions of varying Irradiance, Temperature and Humidity. This helps to optimize the composition and quality of the product.
Xenon cabinet and Bench Xenon are used for these testing.


ASTM G155:
Operating Xenon Arc Light Apparatus for Exposure of Nonmetallic Materials

ASTM D 2565: Xenon-Arc Exposure of Plastics Intended for Outdoor Applications.

UV Weathering Test

UV weathering is an accelerated ageing exposure of plastics to sunlight. The polymer degradation and lifetime can be predicted by accelerating the exposure at different duration, temperature and humidity.

Also it is possible to simulate the natural conditions of sunlight and rain on the same day which creates thermal shock on the materials. This helps to imagine the behavior of the material under various natural conditions.

UV Weathering chamber and Bench UV are used for these testing.

Temperature-Humidity Cyclic Ageing

Accelerated degradation of plastics is caused by combined action of temperature and humidity. The severity of these two factors will depend on the geographic location and need to be taken into account when designing the materials.

The conditions of temperature, humidity and time can be varied and run on a cyclic ageing to simulate the actual climatic condition at which the material will be used.