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Bulk Modulus / Volumetric Compression Testing

A material’s elastic properties can by determined if two moduli are known (either Young’s modulus, shear modulus, bulk modulus, and/or Poisson’s ratio). Some polymeric materials exhibit nearly incompressible behavior with a Poisson’s ratio close to 0.5. Knowing the precise bulk modulus is important when large hydrostatic stresses are present (e.g., high pressure seals, deep sea exploration, etc.)

Veryst conducts bulk modulus (also referred to as volumetric compression) testing by compressing a cylindrical specimen inside a metallic cylinder. The metallic cylinder prevents free radial expansion of the specimen (as occurs in a uniaxial compression test). Analysis of the applied load and resulting strains produces a measure of the specimen’s bulk modulus. As an alternative to confined cylindrical compression, Veryst can also measure Poisson’s ratio of flat specimens in tension or compression using Digital Image Correlation techniques. Well known relationships between Young’s modulus, bulk modulus, and Poisson’s ratio provide a value of bulk modulus.

Veryst can determine the bulk modulus as a function of temperature and loading rate.


 Image at left: Instrumented device to measure bulk modulus  

Image at right: Representative Pressure-Volumetric Strain curve used to determine the bulk modulus.
The slope of the linear region is the bulk modulus.

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