The FEG-SEM can image samples at up to 100,000x magnification, revealing the sample structure in extremely fine detail. Local and global elemental analysis is possible by EDX spectroscopy. The recent addition of an electron back-scattered diffraction detector means that crystal structures, crystallographic orientation, and phase identification can be characterised at a microscopic level. A metallographic section through the fracture site was also prepared and hardness measurements were taken. Finally, chemical analysis was carried out on the material.
As a result, TWI was able to determine and explain the causes of failure and provide recommendations to the company that would enable them to prevent any re-occurrence, minimise the risks and limit associated costs.
For further information, or to find out more about failure analysis please email firstname.lastname@example.org.