These can be carried out either in the laboratory or on site using portable equipment. Determining the hardness of a material can give an excellent indication of the tensile strength.
Macro examination is the procedure in which a specimen is etched and evaluated macro-structurally at low magnifications, typically x10 or lower. Macro examination is a frequently used technique for evaluating steel products such as billets, bars, blooms, and forgings.
Field metallurgical inspection and replication:
This form of non-destructive testing is used to establish cause and/or extent of damage and/or ageing mechanisms in metallic structures from micrographs of grain structure, and is often implemented alongside primary NDT activities. Metallurgical Microstructure Replicas can provide important defect assessment (cause/growth) or remnant life data to engineers responsible for plant management.
Replication is designated by ASTM E 1351 as the Standard Practice for Production and Evaluation of Field Metallographic Replicas and the procedure is performed by engineers and trained technicians using portable polishing equipment following modified laboratory procedures for the preparation of metallographic samples.