What Will Define Research of the Future? – Mechanical Testing for the Next Generation
“Teachers cannot be limited by traditional approaches,” states Dr. Jeffrey Karp of Harvard University. He encourages students to create tools and customize jigs for mechanical testing as they learn to collaborate with others.
Reflecting the interdisciplinary roots of bioengineering, Karp says that testing in higher education serves as an “axis for collaboration” among students and faculty within and among institutions. “You have groups with core facilities or a particular instrument. As long as others know the testing equipment exists, it can draw others there from different backgrounds,” he says. In this scenario, testing equipment, whether it is standard or customized, becomes the ultimate aid in accelerating innovation and improving lives.
Dr. Karp specializes in bioengineering applications, but the need for collaborative customization rings true within and across all disciplines. For example, outside the world of bioengineering, when we run a standard ASTM E8 tension test on a metallic sample, we measure mechanical properties such as yield strength, ultimate tensile strength and elongation. This is a standard test that would be used by an organization to determine if materials meet their defined standards. However, thinking beyond the standard test practice, in a new potential application we may have to measure unusual parameters. Will the material in tension see excessive temperature while experiencing internal pressure? Is there a new material made to a specific geometry that needs to hold a defined load in a critical application?
At ADMET, we work with engineering teams to create these customized material equipment solutions to obtain reliable and repeatable values that will help define the next generation of research. This unconventional approach ensures the measurements truly correlate to the application.