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Dilatometry measures the change in size of a sample as a function of temperature. In addition to directly determining the thermal expansion of the sample, the change in size also provides information about phase transitions and physical or chemical changes in the microstructure. These can be identified by the associated changes in density and rate of expansion of the material. Dilatometry is also an extremely useful method for evaluating the sintering behavior of materials, as it records both the shrinkage of a sintered sample and the temperatures required to achieve this change. This analysis allows optimization of workpiece shapes and processing temperatures, improvement of product quality and reduction of costs.

TA Instruments optical dilatometer DIL806 and ODP868 measure the thermal expansion of a sample placed horizontally inside of a furnace by evaluating the width of its shadow in a collimated light beam. The optical measurement method is uniquely free of any external contact forces acting on the sample and provides high resolution and accuracy, comparable to these of a pushrod dilatometer. Optical dilatometry is therefore the optimal method to measure soft, fragile, or very small samples, which might get plastically deformed or damaged in a pushrod dilatometer or might be too difficult to handle due to their size. The DIL806 is capable of measuring in a variety of atmospheres and covers temperatures ranging from -150°C to 1400°C. The ODP868 analyzes dimension, shape and bending of samples between room temperature and 1650°C.

TA is the only supplier offering true optical dilatometers with nanometer resolution. This technology allows highly accurate dilatometric measurements of soft polymers, foams and thin films, which could easily bend or yield under any external load. The optical dilatometers are also excellent instruments for measuring sintering of powder metals and ceramics without external force applied that approximates typical firing conditions. The furnaces are capable of rapid heating and cooling rates, allowing multiple measurements per day and the accurate simulation of production processes.

Optical Dilatometers Instruments

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