Spectrographic Commissioned to Supply Metallurgical Analysis Software to BST

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Spectrographic Limited, a leading supplier of metallographic equipment and consumables, have been commissioned to supply to BST, a manufacturer of high integrity fasteners, with Metallurgical Analysis Software.

Image courtesy of BST supplies Co Limited and BAE systems

Spectrographic's testing equipment is reliable, their prices are good, and our relationship with them enables us to carry out our work to a high standard. - Paul Bate, Materials Manager, BST

Spectrographic Limited, a leading supplier of metallographic equipment and consumables to the material science industry, is providing metallurgical analysis software to BST – a manufacturer of high integrity fasteners. BST's fasteners are currently being used in the build of a new generation of super submarines for the Royal Navy.

The metallurgical analysis software, Material Plus, is an integral part of BST’s new materials testing laboratory. The software, supplied and installed by Spectrographic, is being used for quality inspection procedures.

Spectrographic’s Materials Plus software is a new generation image analysis programme. The software, deemed to be both user-friendly and extremely efficient, enables scientists to conduct metallurgical investigations easily. It delivers excellent results through a cleverly designed reporting function. The software is available in a wide range of modules, compatible with the majority of file formats and works with live images.

BST is using the software for metallurgical investigation, including checking for cleanliness (non-metallic inclusions) and assessing grain sizes to UKAS and ISO British Standards. The software helps to ensure that the materials manufactured are of the highest possible quality – an absolute requisite for their work in the defence industry.

The specialist fasteners manufactured by BST for the building of the Royal Navy’s super-submarines are designed to one thousandth of an inch, ensuring optimum accuracy, and are approved for use in every component of the new submarines.

The Royal Navy is currently undertaking a build programme of seven Astute-class submarines. The first, HMS Astute, cost £3.5 billion to build. The submarine was launched in 2007 by Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, at the dockyard in Barrow-in-Furness. According to the Royal Navy’s website, the “HMS Astute has been described as ‘more complex than the Space Shuttle’ and is arguably the finest attack submarine in the world today.”

Paul Bate, Materials Manager at BST, which is based in Bushbury, near Wolverhampton, commented: “The Royal Navy’s on-going Astute Class Programme is a very prestigious project to be involved in. It is our responsibility to work closely with all colleagues to ensure the Ministry of Defence receives quality materials, at cost effective prices. Spectrographic plays a crucial part in this process. Their testing equipment is reliable, their prices are good, and our relationship with them enables us to carry out our work to a high standard.”

Spectrographic’s Analysis Software is just a sample of the wide range of metallographic equipment and consumables available from the company, and indeed of products being used by BST. Spectrographic’s range of hardness testers, polishing machines, microscopes, cameras and cutting machines are being used by companies worldwide, including in the automotive, oil and gas, aerospace industries, and in higher and further education establishments.

Paul Chippendale, Managing Director of Spectrographic, commented: “We’re proud to be supplying BST with testing equipment for use in their work in the defence industry. The analysis software is really exciting stuff, and delivers really accurate results. It is compatible with our cameras and microscopes, which we were also delighted to provide to BST, and represents excellent value for money.”

To find out more about Spectrographic’s products and services please visit http://www.metallography.co.uk

About Spectrographic Limited

Spectrographic Limited is a family-run business, which provides a comprehensive range of new and refurbished metallographic products, equipment and consumables for material science analysis and quality inspection procedures. The company also offers specialist advice in material sample preparation, computer based image analysis and microscopic inspection.

Founded in 1999, Spectrographic was set up and continues to be run by Managing Director, Paul Chippendale – a skilled metallographer with over 20 years’ experience in the industry. The company is based in Baildon, West Yorkshire, with demonstration laboratories in Bradford, Halifax and Sheffield.

Spectrographic has recently embarked on a new partnership with The University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) to set up a facility to support material science in advanced engineering.

Spectrographic's customers are expert metallurgists working in the automotive, oil and gas and aerospace industries, and for higher and further education establishments in the UK and Internationally. Clients include Rolls Royce, BAE Systems, Siemens, Tata Steel, The University of Oxford, The University of Manchester, The University of Sheffield and DEKRA Industrial, Massey University (New Zealand) and The University of the South Pacific (Fiji).

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