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Degradation Research

The operational characteristics and performance of your device/component/material are unlikely to be the same after 10,000 hours of operation. Constant use and operation will degrade components and may result in catastrophic failure modes.

The goal of degradation analysis and research is to determine how a component will fail, how long until it fails, and if there are warning signs (measurable characteristics that can provide actionable data prior to component failure). This helps with defining maintenance intervals, scheduling replacement activities, and/or defining operational costs.

Experience

Lectromec has been developing degradation test plans for decades to support our independent research, commercial applications, and aerospace platform life sustainment evaluations. We have integrated the results of this degradation assessment into several of Lectromec’s services. Find out more

Process

Although the materials/components are different, Lectromec’s process for degradation assessment can be equally applied to raw polymer materials as to completed components. The following is a general outline of our assessment process:

1. Evaluation

In this step, we look at the material/component to be tested and determine what the key stressors in the operational environment are. A preliminary test plan is created to gather data.

2. Preliminary Testing

Limited testing is performed to ascertain component reliability and viability for various tests. This data directs the development of a test plan.

3. Develop and Review Test Plan

Based on the preliminary testing and the customer’s requirements, a test plan is generated to determine the degradation performance of the material/component. This is reviewed with the customer.

4. Test

Depending on the material/component, test requirements will determine the exposure and test performance duration. Lectromec lab follows ISO17025 and certification is currently pending.

5. Model Development and Review

Lectromec’s team of system engineers, computer scientists, chemists, and physicists will seek to develop a degradation model that matches the test result. The objective here is to develop a formula that requires only a few parameters to project the service life of the material/component. Once created and verified, the test results and model are presented to our customer for review and discussion.

Next Step

Looking for the next step? Contact Lectromec to find out more about how we can help you with your degradation assessment needs.