Mechanical testing

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Mechanical testing covers a wide range of tests, which can be divided broadly into two types:

  1. those that aim to determine a material's mechanical properties, independent of geometry.[1]
  2. those that determine the response of a structure to a given action, e.g. testing of composite beams, aircraft structures to destruction, etc.

Mechanical testing of materials[edit]

Tensile test. A standard specimen is subjected to a gradually increasing load (force) until failure occurs. The resultant load-displacement behaviour is used to determine a stress–strain curve, from which a number of mechanical properties can be measured.

There exists a large number of tests, many of which are standardized, to determine the various mechanical properties of materials. In general, such tests set out to obtain geometry-independent properties; i.e. those intrinsic to the bulk material. In practice this is not always feasible, since even in tensile tests, certain properties can be influenced by specimen size and/or geometry. Here is a listing of some of the most common tests:[2]


  1. ^ Siri, Saeed; Maier, Franz; Chen, Longtu; Santos, Stephany; Pierce, David M.; Feng, Bin (2019). "Differential biomechanical properties of mouse distal colon and rectum innervated by the splanchnic and pelvic afferents". American Journal of Physiology. Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology. 316 (4): G473–G481. doi:10.1152/ajpgi.00324.2018. PMC 6483024. PMID 30702901.
  2. ^ Ed. Gale, W.F.; Totemeier, T.C. (2004), Smithells Metals Reference Book (8th Edition), Elsevier

General references[edit]