Metal flaws are quite common. Especially when subjected to cyclic load, overload, etc. Initial observation, pre-existing material data, laboratory studies and failure synthesis are part of a methodical failure analysis. Read on to find out how to find flaws in metal.
Fatigue can be defined as progressive localized damage due to fluctuating stress and stresses in materials. The failure of the metal or its components occurs for reasons such as irregularities in the loading, defects in the material, inadequacies in the design, deficiencies in the maintenance, deficiencies in the construction and due to environmental conditions.
It is very important to know how to find faults in the metal in order to identify your reason. In doing so, it is possible to take the necessary corrective measures in the design, maintenance and operation to prevent a new failure from occurring.
Most failures of metal components are due to fatigue that is the result of cyclic loading.
The steps involved in investigating a failure are as follows:
How to find flaws in metal: Initial observation
It seems obvious, but it is worth mentioning that the initial observation of the failure includes making a detailed visual study and analysis of the real component or parts that failed during the operation.
All details of the failure must be gathered and photographed so that it can be used for analysis of the failing parts in the future. The analysis should be done on the marks of deformation, appearance of fracture, deterioration, etc.
Collect all data related to specifications and drawings, component design, component manufacture, any repairs done before the failure, any major work done before the failure and the service period of the component, as well as any problems perceived during the operation of that component or machine in particular.
When all of this data is accurately collected, it is possible to analyze the reason for the metal failures.
How to find flaws in metal: Laboratory studies
Laboratory studies are another excellent way to find out how to find flaws in metal. The procedure includes verifying that the chemical composition of the material that has failed is within the specified limits.
Studies also include checking the dimensions and physical properties of the failed component.
Complementary tests should be carried out, if necessary, to confirm the properties of the component or parts.
For example, carrying out the hardness test to determine the hardness of the material. Determining the microstructure of the material to verify the heat treatment, verifying the ductility of the material by the free curvature test.
Performing non-destructive tests to check for defects or cracks in the component, and also to check the composition of corrosion products in the metal, etc.
Before completing the investigation, you should study all the facts and evidence of the failure, positive and negative, to provide answers to the typical questions presented below:
Was the part installed correctly?
Was the part maintained correctly?
How long has the part been in service?
Has it been subjected to abuse of service?
Were there any changes to the environment before the failure?
Was the part maintained properly during operation?
Was the failure due to ductility, fragility or a combination of both?
Did the crack start recently or increase for a long time?
Did the failure start at one point, or did it originate at several points?
All of these questions combined with theoretical analysis are an effective way to find out how to find flaws in metal.
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