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Metallographic and materialographic analysis is a central field of work in materials science for the qualitative and quantitative description of microstructures.

In the field of research and development, for materials science consulting and quality assurance or for damage analysis, the light and electron microscopic microstructure evaluation is an essential component for the assessment of the material properties. Among other things, microscopic observation enables conclusions to be drawn about the manufacturing process and helps to clarify cases of damage. Furthermore, the results of a metallographic analysis form the basis for innovative material developments through the understanding between microstructure and material properties.

The available methods of materialographic analysis are also fully applicable in industrial contract investigations, both for quality control and for identifying product defects and their causes as part of a damage analysis as required.

The Metallographic Analysis Department carries out materialographic investigations for internal projects at Leibniz-IWT, MPA (Bremen) and the University of Bremen, as well as for external orders from industry and commerce.


Service of Metallographic Analysis

Materialographic preparation and analytics

Production of macroscopic and light microscopic sections

  •     Investigations in the micro and macro range
  •     Analysis of metallic materials, lightweight materials, material composites (e.g. steels, aluminium, nickel, zinc, GRP, CFRP)
  •     Characterisation of microstructures or microstructural components
  •     Detection of defined phases or phase components
  •     Light microscopic damage analysis

Digital image analysis
  • Porenanalyse
  • Grain size determination (according to ASTM and DIN)
  • Determination of microstructure and phase fractions
  • Determination of purity (according to DIN)

Hardness testing

Hardness test according to Vickers

  •     Hardness values in the micro, small and macro load range from 0.05 to 30 kp
  •     Recording of hardness curves
  •     Hardness determination on individual microstructural components
  •     Testing of heat treatment conditions

Electron microscopy


  •     Qualitative / semi-quantitative phase analysis (EDX)
  •     Size determination of particles, layers etc.
  •     Investigation of surface structures
  •     Fracture surface analysis
  •     3D surface measurement


  •     Qualitative determination of phase fractions
  •     Analysis of local textures
  •     Location of precipitates
  •     Analysis of grain boundaries
  •     Location / intensity of deformations


  •     Quantitative / qualitative determination of elemental contents (WDX and EDX)
  •     WDX - analysis of light elements like C, N, O
  •     Element distributions in the measuring range


  •     STEM - Investigations
  •     Fabrication of TEM lamellae
  •     Nanostructuring
  •     Target preparation
  •     3D characterisation (EBSD / SEM / EDX)