Mechanical Behaviour of Materials


The MBM laboratory contains equipment for fatigue, fracture mechanics and vibration research for aerospace materials and biomechanics of in vitro and in situ applications. Unique facilities include a hip simulator for fatigue testing of fixation in hip and knee replacements, and an electromagnetic shaker system.

Hip Simulator

4 stations with 3 axis of rotation and a load actuator capable of reproducing hip contact force during normal walking and stair climbing with loads up to 5kN. Each station and motor capable of independent control as are the individual loads. Digital data acquisition and control system.

XT H 225 µCT System

The MBM lab is equipped with a XT H 225 real-time X-ray inspection system, which has both fully programmable and manual operations. With its 225kV X-ray source, feature recognition down to 1 μm and volume measurement of ø250 mm and 600 mm height, it is suited for a wide range of applications and materials ranging from organic or biological samples to light alloys. The XT H 225 has 3 linear axes and 2 rotational axes allowing a view of the sample at any angle. The 10kg manipulator is controlled by variable speed joysticks. It is able to manipulate any sample, within its weight range, with the highest precision.

3kN Micromechanical Loading Device

A novel custom-made (Deben Ltd, UK) micromechanical loading stage (LS), equipped with a 3kN miniature load cell, is available for in situ testing within the µCT chamber. The loading device is a modular system consisting of a carbon fibre cylinder and a modular actuator with a load cell. Mini modular clamps and platens allow the stage to be adaptable for different micromechanical testing.

Instron 1603

Electro-magnetic resonance machine capable of 50kN dynamic and 100kN static loading. Fitted with a DCPD system with PC based data acquisition. Frequency dependant on the specimen stiffness.

Amsler Vibrophore

Updated with Si-Plan digital control system and fitted with furnace rated at 1000oC and DCPD crack monitoring system. Computer controlled with digital data aquisition system.

Instron 1362

Single screw fatigue machine capable of 100kN static and 50kN dynamic loading. Fitted for 12.5 and 25mm high temperature extensometry, high temperature fatigue (1300oC) and DCPD crack measurement system. Computer controlled with digital data acquisition system.

Schenck Major-Minor Machine

Servo hydraulic major cycle with electro-magnetic shaker. Fitted with 100kN load cell with a frame rated at 500kN. Capable of major-minor cycle wave-forms with major cycles up to 10Hz and minor cycles up to 4kHz. Minor cycle amplitude 4kN. Fitted with furnace up to 800oC and DCPD crack measurement system. Digital control system with data acquisition by Si-Plan.

ESH Major-Minor Machine

Servo-hydraulic major - minor actuators rated at 100kN and 100Hz minor cycle and 10Hz major cycle maximum. Fitted with 1200oC furnace and DCPD crack measurement system. Digital controls and data acquisition.

Tension-Torsion Machine

Servo-hydraulic tension rated at 100kN  and servo-hydraulic torsion actuator rated at 400Nm. Fitted for extensometry both contact and video. Digital control system based on a PC by Si-Plan.

Instron 8000

Servo-hydraulic fatigue machine rated at 100kN and upto 15Hz. Fitted with furnace to 1200oC, 12.5 and 25mm high temperature extensometers and Matelect DCPD system. Computer controlled with digital data acquisition.

Si-Plan 25kN

Servo –hydraulic cross head mounted actuator fitted with DCPD and extensometry capable of 120Hz but with multiple servo valves to ensure low frequency and static loading stability.

ESH 10kN

Analogue controlled servo-hydraulic system with digital data acquisition system capable of 80Hz. Cross head mounted actuator.


Low and high power optical microscopy. Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) with EDAX micro chemical analysis facilities.

Lloyd 30 kN Tensile Test Machine

Screw driven tensile and compression testing machine with low temperature oven. PC controlled with data acquisition. Displacement control only.

Hounsfield Tensometer 25kN

Two tensometers for tensile or compressive testing horizontal layout with PC based data acquisition. Displacement control only.

Derritron VP85 Shaker System

The shaker is capable of reproducing a wide range of band-limited random, sinusoidal, and transient motions with various custom specifications. Key specifications:

  • Peak-to-peak displacement: 2.5 cm
  • Excitation frequency range: 2 to 6000 Hz
  • DataPhysics DSA5-1K 1000W power amplifier
  • Data acquisition system of up to 16 channels