Powertech’s polymer and materials testing lab offers over 20 years of experience in non-metallic materials testing and services for OEM clients, utilities, oil & gas, and transportation industries. The polymer and materials lab provides physical and chemical characterization and failure analysis of plastics, elastomers, composites, resins, coatings, additives, and fillers according to standard testing procedures (ISO and ASTM) or custom developed/designed methods according to client requirements.

Polymeric/non-metallic materials physical characterization

The design and optimization of polymeric products requires that physical and mechanical characteristics to meet defined criteria according to industry standards or specific client specifications. In Powertech’s polymer and materials lab offers physical characterization and quality control testing for all stages of development employing a wide range of modern equipment and facilities. During the selection of tests and for reviewing the data, our technical experts can provide clients with insight on failure analysis and provide guidance on material property improvement. 

Powertech’s polymer and materials physical characterization facilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Mechanical testing (ambient or elevated/reduced temperature):
    • Tensile properties
    • Compressive properties
    • Flexural properties
    • Shear properties
  • Thermal testing:
    • Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC)
    • Dynamic Mechanical Analysis (DMA/DMTA)
    • Thermomechanical Analysis (TMA)
    • Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA)
    • Thermal Conductivity and Resistivity
  • Flammability testing
  • Optical and physical testing:
    • Optical microscopy
    • Color analysis
    • Hardness
    • Density
    • Scratch resistance
  • Melt Flow Rate/Index

Polymers, resins, additives, and filler chemical characterization

Reverse-engineering and failure analysis of polymeric materials require knowledge of the chemical and compositional structure of the material.  In addition to analyzing the physical and mechanical properties of materials, Powertech’s polymer and materials lab offers accelerated aging facilities, as well as, spectroscopic and chromatographic testing to chemically analyze polymers, resins, additives, and fillers.

Powertech’s polymer and materials aging and chemical characterization facilities include:

  • Simulated weathering and aging:
    • Solid, liquid and gas accelerated aging
    • UVA, UVB, temperature, humidity, and salt-fog exposure
  • Spectroscopy:
    • Ultra-Violet/Visible (UV/VIS)
    • Fourier-Transform Infrared (FTIR)
    • Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES)
  • Chromatography
    • High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)
    • Gas Chromatography – Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS)
    • Gas Chromatography – Flame Ionization Detector (GC-FID)
    • Gas Chromatography – Electron Capture Detector (GC-ECD)

Test results are provided in comprehensive reports including testing parameters, uncertainty measurements (if required), photographs (before and after the test), and data analysis. Test witnessing can be accommodated upon request.


Stuart Chambers – 604.590.6614
Manager, Research & Development
Substations Technology & Testing