UK OFFICE : +44 (0)1260 273 802
BRUSSELS OFFICE : +32 (0)2 895 5909

UK OFFICE : +44 (0)1260 273 802
BRUSSELS OFFICE : +32 (0)2 895 5909

Special Reports

Thermo-Mechanical and Tribology Infrastructure


The Engineering Materials Department at the Luleå University of Technology, Sweden, conducts cutting-edge research on developing novel processing approaches to the design microstructure of metallic and ceramic materials for high temperature applications. In its long-term vision of designing new materials and their property characterisation, Thermomechanical and Tribology Testing (TMTEST) Infrastructure has been established with support from Swedish Foundation of Strategic Research, Kempestiftelserna and Luleå University of Technology.

The infrastructure is equipped with several machines designed for high temperature mechanical and tribological characterisation of materials. Moreover, new state of the art instruments for high temperature characterisation such as Gleeble 3800 and high temperature universal tribometer has been inducted in 2017. The infrastructure is extending its collaborative network on development of high temperature materials with the metal and ceramic industries, research institutes and universities.

  • The inauguration of TMTEST infrastructure took place on March 01 which brought together delegates from Swedish universities, industries and research institutes. The inauguration was followed by a workshop on high temperature materials listing distinguished experts in the area of processing, design and properties of high temperature materials research in Sweden.

A high temperature universal tribometer has been added to TMTEST infrastructure in March 2017. The tribometer is capable of studying high temperature tribological properties of materials up to 1,000˚C;

  • The infrastructure offered initiation projects on the infrastructure for high temperature characterisation of the materials where the infrastructure will contribute 50% of the cost of the project; and


  • The TMTEST focused research areas are development of high strength steels, metal and alloys, intermetallic compounds, ceramic composites, additive manufacturing and characterisation of high temperature properties.

Researchers at Luleå University of Technology explain the infrastructure for characterisation tools in developing new materials.

The infrastructure for the mechanical and tribology characterisation of materials has been established this year at Luleå University of Technology and with support from the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research (SSF) and Kempestiftelserna. The infrastructure is named the Thermo-Mechanical and Tribology Infrastructure (TMTEST) and will be developed continuously as a national characterisation facility of strategic relevance for metallic materials and their composites. The infrastructure contains state-of-the-art instruments for mechanical and tribology characterisation of materials.

The infrastructure is actively participating in research and innovation processes in close co-operation with producers of engineering materials and components. In order to bring new material innovations to industrial components, large efforts are needed on extending the capabilities of existing infrastructure for performance characterisation and the design of new characterisation methods to investigate the behaviour of materials in the automotive, aerospace, energy and construction industries in the set of variables close to real applications. In this regard, the infrastructure has inducted new state-of-the-art instruments such as Gleeble 3800 and a high temperature universal tribometer to enhance its characterisation capabilities.

Several PhD students have been recruited to perform research in the characterisation of properties of materials under harsh mechanical and thermal conditions to design new alloys, composites and thin-films with superior properties. The vision of development and promotion of the infrastructure on materials mechanical and tribology characterisation involves introducing a research component on method development for material characterisation on both the small and large scale – in conditions close to real application – supporting research and innovation in high temperature materials, maintaining Sweden’s competitiveness in cutting-edge materials research, and meeting the long-term research objectives of strategically relevant initiatives.

The TMTEST is also supporting research groups and industries in the development of lightweight materials, the automotive industry, energy devices and the construction industry. TMTEST infrastructure is open and available to all researchers and collaborating industries. The vision is to establish a user database and increase co-operation between academia and industries by promoting mobility of staff and PhD students. TMTEST is designed to provide long-term upstream support to facilitate long-term, co-ordinated, cutting-edge research efforts across scientific disciplines involving materials development, with the capability of designing new materials with tailored properties in research projects of strategic relevance, e.g. materials in energy, mining and lightweight materials. The method development and research conducted at the infrastructure will be shared with other research laboratories and industrial partners.

Farid Akhtar, associate professor of engineering materials, has been selected as the infrastructure fellow. He has extensive experience of mechanical and tribological characterisation of metallic, ceramic and composite materials. His extensive experience in the mechanical, wear, friction and sintering of metal matrix and layer composite materials will be useful for developing new characterisation methods for the processing and application of materials in extreme environments.

Contact Info
Farid Akhtar
Luleå University of Technology
+46 (0) 9 204 91793
Luleå University of Technology
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