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The experienced team analyse in our modern equipped materialographic lab metal alloys (steel, Al –, Ti-, Mg- or Cu-alloys,…), hard metals, ceramics, composites and powders. In this regard we offer comprehensive characterisation of grains, grain boundaries, precipitates, inclusions, microcracks as well as of coatings, interfaces and surfaces. The available expertise allows us to support the industry at development of new materials concepts and at solution of failures and damage cases.

Specimen Preparations

The precise sample preparation provides an essential input for the subsequent qualitative and quantitative micro and nano structure analysis. In this connection following preparation steps and methods are offered:

  • cutting of even large and complex shaped specimens (……)
  • embedding in a moulding press (160, 180°C), cold under vacuum, at air – very small parts( e.g. electronic parts, solder joints), foils, wires, …,
  • grinding – manually and automatically
  • polishing – mechanically, chemically/mechanically, chemically and electro-chemically in a wide temperature range
  • etching – chemically, electro-chemically, thermally
  • sputtering for coating with a thin metal (Au, Pt, Cr,..,) and Carbon layer of non-conducting surfaces for scanning electron microscope investigations
  • etching and polishing by Ga2+ ions in a CrossBeam Workstation
  • preparation of FIB cross sections

We also offer unique preparations for detailed HRSEM/FIB and EBSD analysis.

Materialography_1 Examples of machines for sample preparation in materialography lab at AAC


For qualitative and quantitative microstructure analysis inverse light microscope operating in bright field, dark field, polarisation light and interference contrast are used. The microscope are equipped a soft imaging system “Scandium” for image processing and 2D / 3D image analysis.

Our analysis spectrum:
  • Qualitative and quantitative characterisation of grains – morphology , distribution and size
  • Grain boundaries – density, distribution
  • Precipitates, inclusions, phases, pores – size, morphology, distribution, density, area fraction, microhardness
  • Coatings – thickness, (micro)hardness, interface characterisation, homogeneity
  • Surface – damages, corrosion

Examples of Qualitative Analysis


Examples of Quantitative Analysis


Materialography_c  Materialography_9.jpg