Strain Gauging

April 2010

Strain gauges are used to measure the minute elastic stretch or strain of materials as a load or pressure is applied.  This strain measurement can then be used to calculate the actual mechanical stress in a component or part of a component, i.e. gear tooth, structural supports, pressure vessels.

Mainstream Engineering's equipment is wireless and totally portable requiring no external power supply, therefore it can be used on moving parts/equipment in remote or hazardous conditions, as simply as it can in workshop or laboratory conditions.

The vast applications of this equipment make it invaluable for situations from identifying or troubleshooting equipment and process reliability concerns, proving mechanical design, to improving mechanical efficiency.

Examples of typical applications:    
  • Optimizing mechanical design reduce weight and/or manufacturing costs by measuring actual stresses to accurately identify redundant or excessive safety margins. 
  • Monitoring and recording of strain/stress in manufactured parts or equipment undergoing service testing, i.e.  lifting equipment; pressure vessel hydro-tests; load application to structural supports
  • Failure analysis and troubleshooting repeat mechanical equipment fracture failures
  • Health monitoring of civil structures and vehicles
  • Crack detection and propagation measurement   
  • Linear displacement   
  • Temperature measurement and recording applications  
  • Pressure measurement and recording applications

Mainstream Engineering's strain gauging equipment allows remote calibration, data acquisition and up to 32 hours of continuous data collection or 2500 hours of interrupted/spot data collection.  Triggers can also be set to collect data when specified conditions exist.

Recent applications:
  • Monitoring of loads being temporarily supported by hoist and jack to ensure even distribution of load and control of stresses
  • Paper machine drive shaft torque measurement, and analysis of time waveform torque data to identify drive frequencies
  • Strain measurement and stress analysis of structural assemblies