Facilities

The principal laboratories of TRI/Austin are located on 40 acres in the Austin, Texas Hill Country. TRI/Austin occupies three buildings with a combined floor space of 27,800 feet. The laboratories that support the technical requirements of our programs use over two-thirds of this space; the remaining space is used by the administrative and support personnel that serve TRI/Austin as well as the other TRI companies.

Our laboratory and facility capabilities include:

  • Materials Testing
  • Chemistry
  • PEMS Evaluation
  • COPV Testing Facility
  • Accelerated Testing
  • Polymer Processing
  • Composite Prototyping and Fabrication
  • Nondestructive Testing
  • Software
  • Electronics
  • Machine Shop

Our facilities meet environmental laws and regulations of federal, Texas, and Travis county governments for, but not limited to, the following groupings: airborne emissions, waterborne effluents, external radiation levels, outdoor noise, solid and bulk waste disposal practices, and handling and storage of toxic and hazardous materials.

Materials Testing Laboratory
We can conduct tests of materials, processes and products to ASTM or customer-specified standards. Materials tested include composites, polymers, elastomers, films, foams, adhesives, coatings and metals. Representative Projects include:

  • Tensile, compressive, flexural, fatigue, impact, shock, creep, and stress relaxation testing of neat and reinforced polymers under temperature- and humidity- controlled conditions
  • Degradation testing of polymeric materials in wet/dry and temperature-controlled conditions
  • Corrosion testing of metals in air and seawater
  • Chemical permeation and penetration testing of metals in air and seawater

Chemistry Laboratory
We can perform analysis, synthesis, testing and characterization of organic and inorganic compounds and materials. Representative projects include:

  • High-temperature resin chemistry
  • Anti-corrosion chemistry
  • Anti-fouling chemistry
  • Electrochemistry

PEMS Evaluation Laboratory
TRI/Austin has developed and validated life accelerating procedures and reliability models that can be used as a “standard of evaluation” for lead free solders, making possible to compare them with each other and with well established tin-lead solder.

  • PEM’s qualification per Military Standards
  • Accelerated Life Testing of PEM’s
  • Evaluation of Gallium arsenide (GaAs) monolithic microwave integrated circuits (MMICs)
  • Reliability assessment of the next generation lead-free solder alloys

Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessel Testing Facility
The COPV testing facility was designed for stress rupture testing require tight control of both temperature and pressure to allow for the precise measurement of small strain changes due to creep.

  • High Air Circulation Thermal Chambers
  • Temperature Controlled Burst Test Facility
  • Manual and PC Operated Pressure Regulators
  • 9,000 PSI Duplex Pump
  • 2,500 PSI Triplex Pump
  • Special “Dumb Bell” Test Fixture Fabricated at TRI/Austin

Accelerated Testing Laboratory
Exposure of materials and products to age-accelerating environments for reliability assessments and lifetime predictions. Representative Projects:

  • Accelerated life testing (ALT) of polymers, composites, elastomers, films, foams, adhesives, and coatings
  • Age monitoring via impedance spectroscopy, material properties, insulation/internal resistance
  • ALT of sonar, transducers, hydrophones, and underwater cables/connectors
  • ALT of seals, boots, and coatings used in marine applications
  • ALT of electronic assemblies, heat trace cables, and line splices

Polymer Processing
Development of processing techniques for polymeric materials

  • Extrusion, compression, molding, filament winding, vacuum processing, casting, spray application, injection molding
  • Vaccum processing of Kevlar-polyurethane composites
  • Compression molding of graphite/epoxy composites
  • Extrusion of polythiourethane and polyurethane elastomers
  • Extrusion of hollow core polymers

Composites Prototyping
This facility is capable of creating prototypes and low volume preproduction composite components.

  • Filament winding
  • Hand layup
  • UV cure systems
  • Compression molding

Nondestructive Testing Laboratory
Ultrasonic nondestructive evaluation of materials; guided wave NDE; assessment of flaws in ferromagnetic materials using electric current perturbation techniques, immersion ultrasonic scanning, and electromagnetic flux leakage. Capabilities include:

  • Developing NDE methods for transducer boots and composite material inspection on sonar transducers
  • Developing, designing, fabricating, and field testing an automated magnetic NDE system for bridge suspension cable
  • Developing AE system for JSF CBM
  • Determining fitness for service and remaining useful life of shafts using AE
  • Pipe Materials Selection Wizard
  • Distributed Sensor System Network Communications Protocol
  • Acoustic Emission Condition Assessment

Machine Shop
Fabrication of parts from metals and plastics. Prototype and specialized test equipment fabrication.Some past projects include fabrication of transducer components, pressure housings, polyurethane and rubber molds, and test fixtures