Material analysis

Material analysis is a rapid, non-destructive testing method used for quality assurance in the metal industry. The chemical composition of a material is investigated to determine the exact type of material. This is necessary if the material is unknown or mix-ups of material need to be ruled out. Material analysis is also used for comparative measurement, for example to compare the material with the test certificate. At Härtha, we use state-of-the-art equipment to examine iron-based materials. Rely on our exact analysis of the material type to lay the foundation for the success of subsequent heat and other treatments.

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Processes & investigated materials


Different methods of material analysis can be used to examine a variety of materials. At Härtha, we use optical emission spectroscopy to analyse iron-based materials.


The metal analysis can serve the following functions:

  • Identification of unknown types of materials
  • Testing the delivery quality of a material
  • Testing a material against DIN standards
  • Determination of reasons for excessive wear
  • Determination of material quality
  • Exclusion of material mix-ups


Optical Emission Spectroscopy (OES)

Optical emission spectroscopy is also known as arc-spark OES or spark OES. It is used to determine grades of steel, and is carried out using a OES spectrometer, also known as a spark spectrometer. The device displays the emission spectrum of chemical substances.


As soon as a material or component passes through the spark stand, it generates an arc or spark discharge. The contact between spark and material causes the sample material to evaporate. The atoms and ions released in the process are excited to radiation state. This emitted radiation is passed through optical systems and separated into its spectral components.


This results in light waves of different length that are typical of the individual elements. Measurement of these different wavelengths makes it possible to clearly identify and quantify the elements or ingredients contained in a material.


Stationary and mobile devices

Both stationary and mobile devices are available for material analysis. At Härtha, we use both types of devices. As well as giving us the ability to react flexibly, we can easily perform exact analyses - even of large and bulky workpieces.


Cost of material analysis

The costs incurred for a material analysis vary with the type of analysis and the workpiece to be examined. In a metal analysis using an OES spectrometer, the number of measuring points decides the costs.


Advantages of material analysis


A key advantage of material analysis is the speed of the process. What is more, as a non-destructive testing method, material analysis also has no effect on the properties of the workpiece.


Knowing the material properties exactly allows compliance with legal testing and safety requirements, as well as efficient use of resources by repairing components. The result is a cost-saving alternative to new purchases.


Process locations


Material analysis can be used in various metal processing processes. Refer to our interactive location overview to find out where we offer each process.