SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1985

New Developments in Automated Materials Testing Systems


This paper traces the development of automated materials testing systems over the past ten years. The rapid reduction in computing hardware costs in recent years, coupled with fundamental improvements in computing systems design, has led to the development of a new generation of test control systems. The paper focuses on recent developments in this area at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

The paper describes in detail a microcomputer-based controller designed to be used with a standard servohydraulic test frame. The controller uses menu-driven software which permits the operator to set up and execute tests, sample and store data, and transfer the collected data to a host computer system for data reduction and archival storage. Currently, software exists to perform standard low-cycle fatigue tests and other related test procedures. The software is designed to permit ease of operation and reduce the chance of operator error. In addition, numerous checks are performed during the course of a test to assure that the test is carried out in accord with ASTM specifications where applicable.

The paper contains a discussion of digital communications as they relate to the materials testing laboratory. The growing array of computing hardware in the testing laboratory necessitates the careful selection of communication techniques to match the needs of each application and the laboratory as a whole. The paper concludes with a discussion of the impact of new testing techniques on testing standards.

Author Information

Miller, NR
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL
Dittmer, DF
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL
Socie, DF
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL
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Developed by Committee: E08
Pages: 9–26
DOI: 10.1520/STP32877S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-4942-7
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-0421-1