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Package defect From August 2017

How are packaging defects detected under the microscope?

We use a comprehensive range of techniques to carry out packaging investigations. Through the identification and characterisation of layers in multi-laminates, defects - such as faulty seals, delamination, perforations and pin holing - can be detected. To do this we use different microscopes.

Stereo microscopy - a simple visual examination can help steer the assessment

Compound microscopy - thin cryostat (frozen) sections of packaging under a compound microscope allow us to view and measure multiple layers.

FT-IR Microscopy/Spectroscopy - used to identify plastic materials/layers, by viewing a cross-section and mapping areas of it under the FT-IR microscope. From this we look at spectrums from individual areas of interest and match these against an extensive library to identify each layer.

Scanning electron microscopy and x-ray mapping - used for identification of metallic layers. An elemental map is run on an edge-on section of interest and this shows us a visual representation of the distribution of the elements present.

These tests complement a complete packaging analysis service covering all forms of packaging, using additional techniques including micro-CT scanner, dye penetration testing, pressure testing and migration testing.

Contact: Zoe Larkins
+44(0)1386 842189