This paper discusses new solutions to a variety of materials tests that were previously difficult and time-consuming to perform. Digital controllers now give the researcher or test engineer tremendous versatility in test control. The ability of the digital controller to perform user-defined, real-time control calculations using physical inputs from the test system gives previously unequaled performance in a variety of testing applications. Furthermore, software that allows these calculations to be quickly and easily defined improves system friendliness. This capability is applicable to a wide variety of tests, including thermal-mechanical fatigue, true stress control, inelastic and true strain control, and geomechanics applications. The authors will discuss some specific uses of this capability.
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