Failure Analysis

The Problem

Despite all the developments in engineering and manufacturing, materials do fail. Because of all the efforts that go into the design and R&D of the machinery and components, it is often assumed that the operator must be the cause. This leaves the ship operators holding the blame for many cases of failed machinery.

The Solution

When detailed analysis is carried out involving metallurgy, metallography, spectroscopy, it is found that in most of the cases that the operator is not to blame. The cause is often the choice of material for the application, the manufacturing process, the heat treatment following the manufacturing, the assembly or the conditions of operation that has resulted in the failed equipment. Failure analysis is a field of study that does a deep investigation to find the root cause of the failure

Complete break of connecting rod of the engine due to faulty heat treatment. Material analysis was normal
The gradual deformation and breaking of the connecting rod led to the piston getting cracked
Breakage of the turbine blade
Micrograph at 50X magnification along the fracture

Photomicrographs of the blade fracture profile & creep void, indicated by the red arrow. The break of the turbine was related to creep rupture

Creep rupture is a time dependent distortion of a material while under a load that is within acceptable parameters. It most often occurs at elevated temperatures, which can weaken the material. Time, temperature and applied load are three parameters that can contribute to a fracture.


Viswa Lab has a team of scientists and engineers with expertise in metallurgy, mechanical engineering and marine engineering. The team has extensive experience in problem solving. Viswa Lab can work with sophisticated technology to help analyze the problem and arrive at a cause, which will help in understanding the factors that contributed to the failure and avoid this for the future.

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