It is estimated that there are currently more than 40,000 useful metallic alloys and probably a similar number of nonmetallic engineering materials to choose from. This vast number of available materials, coupled with numerous manufacturing processes and a long list of requirements for a specific application can make the materials selection process a very complex and difficult task.
Furthermore, materials selection and substitution decisions usually lead to a variety of solutions from multiple suppliers, where careful consideration of advantages and limitations, compromises and trade-offs are often required. This is why similar components, designed to perform identical functions, but produced by different manufacturers, are often made from different materials and even different manufacturing processes and will commonly translate into different performance levels.
Materials selection is one of the most important and often overlooked stages of the design process, and if carried out haphazardly, can dramatically compromise the safety of any application and greatly increase the price of non conformance.
Most of the markets and applications that Parker serves bring some of the greatest challenges for materials and design engineers. Companies and their specialists often deal with highly corrosive, toxic, flammable chemicals where not only the operators’ safety is a priority, but also chemical release to the environment is a serious concern.
Materials selection does not only involve corrosion resistance considerations, but also manufacturing issues, such as:
- Desired mechanical performance
- Equipment useful life
- Potential changes to the material with changing in-service conditions
- Reparability and maintenance
- Environmental impact
On top of these issues, time to market and mandatory compliance to regulatory expectations and industry standards are of paramount importance.Common issues in many projects and applications are:
- The lack of specification (functional risks are not exhaustively identified)
- Lack of systematic approach to the design process
- Poor design management (detailed design decisions are frozen or committed before all top level issues are resolved)
- Poor safety risk management (lack of visibility of the overall approach to safety)
- Lack of knowledge or experience
All those circumstances often lead to ‘unnecessary failures’ and can seriously damage the profitability, competitiveness and prestige of any business.
Our primary philosophy is to build reliable, efficient, cost-effective equipment for the intended service. Parker always strives for the best quality in the designs we produce, the materials we select and manufacturing processes we apply.
In order to find the optimum solution for your application, Parker Instrumentation offers a systematic approach to design and a wealth of experience and knowledge in the markets and applications that we serve. At Parker we can help you to get the material and equipment selection right first time by selecting the optimal solution with high quality materials and advanced manufacturing processes. Parker Instrumentation is determined to help our customers achieve a lower product cost, faster time to market, reduction of in-service failure, increase safety and reliability, and significant competitive advantage.
Remember that “Right First Time” is a state of mind. A successful application starts with smart material selection. The benefits will then be:
- Improved quality, service performance, safety and reliability
- More cost effective solutions
- Reduced maintenance cost, in-field service failure and production downtime
- Faster time to market
- Cleaner systems, by meeting new legal or regulatory requirements
- Increased predictability for suppliers, manufacturers and contractors by implementing common industry material requirements, standards and specifications