Being based at TWI gives the Non-metallic Innovation Centre access to research laboratories, and technical teams of scientists and engineers with highly skilled capabilities in design, build, evaluation and improvement of technologies relating to (i) welding, joining, coating, additive manufacturing and cutting, (ii) material, component and structural testing, and (iii) inspection and monitoring. This includes state-of-the-art equipment for materials characterisation and analysis, identification of solutions for specific applications and causes behind industrial need.
TWI has designed and built a high-pressure facility for permeation testing of polymeric materials. The new rig allows materials to be tested with a variety of gas mixtures and hydrocarbons, then graded in terms of performance. The rig expands existing measurement capabilities for polymers. It works by allowing four polymer discs to be exposed to gas mixtures at small pressure intervals up to 650 bar and temperatures up to 250 degrees centigrade.
TWI has gathered together a collection of many millions of pounds worth of equipment, ensuring the ability of the site to use the latest technologies in carrying out research projects. By amassing this quantity and variety of high-level equipment, TWI and the NIC will be able to tackle industry needs and expand innovation using analytical and investigative techniques, providing NIC and its collaborators with detailed, insightful reports and solutions. Much of our equipment is located in our 3200m2 engineering hall, served by four overhead cranes. In total, TWI in Cambridge features more than 6000m2 of workshop and laboratory space.