At STEER’s, NABL accredited, Polymer Science and Diagnostic Center (PSDC), we offer expertise across a range of speciality areas that add value to your business, all under a single roof. Whether its materials development, technology development, testing and characterisation, our PSDC caters to the holistic needs of the polymer industry and addresses issues relating to analysis. Besides being a knowledge bank, we partner with various organisations around the world to help create quality compounds and better products.
Our Lab ExperienceFacilities
Our Lab ExperienceFacilities
At STEER’s, NABL accredited, Polymer Science and Diagnostic Center (PSDC), we offer expertise across a range of speciality areas that add value to your business, all under a single roof. Whether its materials development, technology development, testing and characterisation, validation or certification, our PSDC caters to the holistic needs of the polymer industry and addresses issues relating to analysis. Besides being a knowledge bank, we partner with various organisations around the world to help create quality compounds and better products.
Process ability Tests
Processability tests are conducted to understand the flow behaviour of the material before it is converted into a finished product. Certain processability tests include determination of Melt Flow Index and Rheometry.
Melt Flow Indexer(MFI)*: (7026, Ceast, Italy) Melt Flow Index is an assessment of average molecular mass and is an inverse measure of the melt viscosity; Knowing the MFI of a polymer is vital to anticipating and controlling its processing. Generally, higher MFI polymers are used in injection molding, and lower MFI polymers are used with blow molding or extrusion processes.
Capillary Rheometer: (RH2000, Malvern, UK) Capillary rheometry has its origins in polymer melt processing, but is also directly relevant to many other material processes such as high speed coating and printing applications. Based on controlled extrusion of a test material, capillary rheometry enables material flow and deformation properties to be characterized under conditions of high force (or pressure), high shear rate and at elevated temperature.
Short term mechanical tests
Short Term Mechanical tests include determination of mechanical properties where the effects of long times or cycles are not considered. These tests include tensile, compression, flexural, shear, tear, impact and hardness determination.
Universal Testing Machine (with environmental chamber and video extensometer* : (5569 A, Instron, USA) Also known as a universal tester, materials testing machine or materials test frame, is used to test the tensile strength, flexural strength, lap-shear, trouser tear, stress relaxation and compression strength of materials under ambient conditions as well as at higher temperature.
Pendulum Impact Tester* : (Impactor II, Ceast, Italy) The test is designed to give information on how a specimen of a known material will respond to a suddenly applied stress. The test ascertains whether the material is tough or brittle. A notched or un-notched test piece is employed and the two methods in general use are either the Izod or Charpy test.
Hardness Tester: (Shore A, Shore D, Megatech Overseas (I) Ltd.) The hardness test is a valuable and most widely used mechanical test for evaluating the properties of metals as well as certain other polymeric materials. The hardness of a material usually is considered as resistance to permanent indentation.
Effect of Temperature
All physical properties of polymers change with variation in temperature. Plastics melt at higher than ambient temperature; however, melting temperature of different polymer is different. Applicability of different polymer depends on their melting behaviour. Therefore, it is extremely important to know the effect of temperature on the plastic materials, especially when those are used at elevated temperature.
HDT/VICAT* : (HDT6 Vicat, 6921, Ceast, Italy) Measures the deflection temperature of materials under a given load. This property of a plastic material is applied in many aspects of product design, engineering, and manufacture of products.
Thermal characterization or analysis involves the study of one or more properties of the material as function of temperature.
Thermo Gravimetric Analyzer* : (TGA 4000, Perkin Elmer) TGA is used to carry out ash content, decomposition temperature and pattern, composition in composites, moisture and/or volatile content.
These tests evaluate the resistance of polymers to some environmental conditions other than temperature and air. Liquids which have no significant effect on polymers in unstrained conditions can cause severe effect on them under strained conditions which results in large number of failures in plastics.
Environmental Stress Cracking Resistance Tester : (ESCR, 6947, Ceast, Italy) ESCR is used for determining the susceptibility of polymers to environmental stress cracking when subject to certain conditions.
It is the study of the interaction between matter and radiated energy. Spectroscopic data is often represented by a spectrum, a plot of the response of interest as a function of wavelength or frequency. The spectroscopy is a very useful technique to identify unknown materials.
Colour Matching Spectra photometer (BGD556, Aadarsh-Bieuged): Colour matching spectrophotometer is basically used to determine the value of DE, DC, DH, L, A, B and C, for all Polymer, paints and liquids in both SCI and SCE mode.
This machine also measures yellowness and whiteness index for polymers, and powders.
It is very much useful to check the colour consistency from batch-to-batch.
Measurement of Mass, Dimensions and Density : These are the most frequently done measurements in testing labs. They could be used as routine measurements for quality control or for checking of consistency or as essential parts of other physical tests.
- Mass and Density Balance (METTLER TOLDEO)
- Vernier Calipers (Mitutoya)
- Micrometer Screw Gauge (Mitutoya)
Measurement of Moisture content : Moisture affects the morphology and mechanical properties of polymers. Moisture content of compounding ingredients should be well within the specification, as higher moisture content may adversely affect the performance of the polymeric goods.
Moisture Content Analyzer : (MA 150, Sartorius) The MA150 infrared moisture analyzer features a compact design along with flexibility of use. Their program memory enable efficient moisture analysis even for a large number of different samples and is therefore optimally designed for use in inspection of incoming goods and quality assurance.
Sample Preparation is an integral and an important part of testing and characterization. Careful and consistent sample preparation is necessary since most mechanical and physical properties vary significantly depending upon ways of sample preparation.
- Injection molding machine (L&T, India)
- CNC milling machine (Minicut Vis, Ceast, Italy)
- Hollow die punch (6051, Ceast, Italy)
- Notch cutter (6964, Ceast, Italy)
- Sample conditioning chamber
- Hydraulic die punch (193, International Equipments)
- Centrifuge (R-24, Remi Instruments)
- Sonicator (DT-151, D-Tech Instruments)
What we doServices & Solutions
New formulation development
With our expertise in polymer compounding, we can cater to the specific needs of material development for every customer.
We guide customers in developing new formulations or modifying existing ones for filled / composite / alloys & blends as well as other niche applications.
The understanding of the extruder processing zone (EPZ) and the exposure and understanding of conducting numerous trials under production conditions enable us to offer end to end solutions for various applications.
The synergy with the application development centers helps the PSDC to create and deliver polymer processing solutions as per the need of the customer.
Support for technology and process development.
Steer has already introduced the following indigenous technologies:
- Direct processing of long fiber reinforced thermoplastics for automotive and non automotive applications.
- Manufacturing of long glass fiber pellets.
- Natural fiber filled polymer composites
- Wood polymer composites
- Processing of Bio-Polymer
- Nano composites
- Processing of food
- Processing of seaweeds
- Reactive extrusion (chemical reaction, grafting, polymerization)
Testing and Characterization
Materials play a very important role in the development of quality products.
Steer PSDC’s polymer testing lab – a reliable testing house, where testing is carried out based on certain understanding of the manufacturing as well as the testing process with the appropriate diagnostics support.
The testing and diagnostic service enables the PSDC to generate ideas for technological problems which help to setup research programs to close gaps and generate knowledge which in turn contribute to developing a scientific ascendancy.
A variety of tests and analysis are offered as per ISO and ASTM standards which are carried out by trained personnel.
Sample preparation is done as per international standards using in house injection and compression molding facilities.
Periodic testing programs can be offered.
We develop tailored certification programs for OEMs to certify their vendors as per relevant standards, so that OEMs are ensured of a quality product.
Technical training courses
Based on its accrued practical knowledge over the years of service to Plastics industry, PSDC would offer.
Technical training courses to students as well as professionals in the form of lectures and seminars.