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6 reasons why material testing is crucial

How to ensure material quality and safety in the energy sector

Published on Thursday March 2, 2023 by Anna Andreatti

The energy industry (oil and gas, nuclear, conventional power generation, chemical power plants etc.) uses steel for many different applications, and steel products are subjected to different operating conditions such as high temperature, high pressure, fatigue etc. which makes it extremely important that the materials used meet the specifications.

Why is material testing important?

Since steel is subjected to these different conditions, steel products used in these applications need to be strong, durable, and resistant, and material testing is a crucial task in quality management, and has the overall goal to deliver sound material and products throughout the whole supply chain.

Project material may be subjected to many mechanical, chemical, and corrosion tests to determine its properties, and evaluate or predict performance characteristics. The consequences of using poor-quality steel in the oil and gas industry can be catastrophic, and material testing helps to reduce these risks and ensure the safety and reliability of the products that are manufactured.

To have a closer look at exactly why material testing is crucial, in this blog post, we’ll go through 6 main reasons.

1. Determine material properties

Conducting different tests provide different information about the material properties. For example, the tensile test is one of the most well-known and used destructive tests, which provides information about a material’s strength, ductility, elasticity, stiffness, malleability, and elastic modulus.

2. Verify material properties

A second reason is to know whether a material is suitable for a specific application (e.g. sour, high temperature etc.). The impact tests is another well-known example of a test that verifies compliance with a material specification and project requirements.

3. Verify production process

Another important reason to conduct material testing is to assess that the manufacturing process is able to provide a compliant material that meets the standards and regulations of the industry.

4. Meet requirements

In the oil and gas industry it is fundamental that materials comply with Laws, Codes, Standards, Material Specifications and Project Requirements. In this way, the risk of accidents are mitigated and high quality materials are used for correct applications.

5. Detect variation of material

Material testing also plays a role in verifying supplier performance by assessing material quality and variations.

6. Find defects

Finally, it is important that during and after production, material quality is evaluated, and quality and final products are verified.


SteelTrace supports material test processes by providing a digital workflow that streamlines traceability and material testing across the supply chain. Our platform connects labs, NDE, inspectors, manufacturers, Operators and EPCs. It adds a security layer that makes sure test results can never be forged or changed. Find out how it works here.