failure analysis case studies

impact present a selection of plastic failure analysis case studies based on our 120 years of combined plastic experience.

failure analysis - example

failure analysis case studies


impact have been involved in hundreds of failure analysis exercises.  These have ranged from quick material analysis, through to full blown failure analysis’ and comparisons for legal cases.

No job is too big or too small.

Below is just a fraction of the failure analysis case studies we have been part of.

oil & gas failure analysis case studies

impact was approached by a manufacturer of measuring equipment that operated in the corrosive environment down hole in the oil & gas environment.  The environment encountered by their component is aggressive with temperatures up to 300°F (149°C) and 10,000 psi are considered standard environment. Other characteristics that increase the level of complexity of an operation are the presence of H2S, CO2 and debris that may be generated by the formation. Also, in the case of H2S and debris, the levels of complexity may be associated with the type of test process used.

Normally a ridged metal protector is used to protect the cable but in this application this was not suitable as the measuring devise needed to be removed after a period

failure analysis - example 1
failure analysis - example 2
failure analysis - example 2

safety helmets

Some plastics are attacked by the sun’s rays resulting in the whitening or the bleaching of colour, components will therefore be produced with a UV stabiliser to protect the product.

We were approached by a leading manufacturer of construction products who on selling their product into Texas started to experience catastrophic failure on certain products within just a few months. It was very evident that the product was undergoing UV degradation which was complicated by the fact that there was a number of different base HDPE used and a range of different colours which all effect the UV absorption by the product.

impact looked at:

The Polymer and additive package used as there was a number of colours, masterbatches and grades of HDPE used, some of the lighters colours had started to fail first as expected but it was apparent that it was not consistent.

Production control: There was no change control in place for swapping both the grade of HDPE and the additive packages with many decisions purely being taken on price, this failure was further compounded by the lack of records and batch control which is good practice in ISO 9001.

Product QC: It was apparent that there was no consideration taken for the eventual use of the product with the UV exposure in Texas being 10 times normally experienced in Norther Europe ie a product with a design life of 10 years, could because of UV exposure alone have this reduced to a single year.

How impact approached the failure was initially to confirm that the experienced product failures were as a result of UV exposure, we then underwent a material selection exercise to identify the best combination of HDPE/additives verses price and performance. impact then provided polymer training for key personnel and supported the manufacture to revise their in house QC process.