To reach solutions for improving the reliability and useful life of materials and components, it is necessary to gain knowledge of the internal structure of those materials. Scientists at the Fraunhofer IWM investigate the reactions of materials and components to mechanical, thermal, chemo-mechanical and tribological loading and clarify their deformation and failure mechanisms. The necessary material parameters are obtained and evaluated in correlation to the microstructure and to structure-altering processes on all size scales. On this basis the Fraunhofer IWM offers materials development as well as process and technique development services.
The institute’s core competence of material and component characterization is derived from its capacity to develop and apply complex testing and analysis methods that go beyond standard procedures and which are thus able to meet the demands of a wide spectrum of simulation approaches tailored to the type and quality of the test data. The basis of this is on the one hand the availability of mechanical testing techniques for a very wide spectrum of temperature, environment and force ranges and load speeds, and on the other hand, expertise in both the selection of characterization methods appropriate to the material and application as well as in the evaluation of damage development. Component testing takes into account locally varying material properties. Additionally, fracture mechanics evaluations and damage analyses are performed.
Salient features of the scope of services include the capturing and evaluation of multiaxial stress conditions, locally obtaining parameters through micro-testing techniques and structure analysis, and expertise in the field of crack propagation, which may for example be used in the development of innovative separation processes. The portfolio is complemented by a range of high-resolution residual stress analysis techniques plus thermo-physical and thermo-mechanical characterization