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Mechanical properties are of interest to engineers utilizing materials in any application where
forces are applied, dimensions are critical, or failure is undesirable. The mechanical properties
of materials are determined by performing carefully designed laboratory experiments that
replicate as nearly as possible the service conditions. Three fundamental mechanical
properties of metals are the elastic modulus (E), the yield point (σ y), and the ultimate
strength (σ ult). In the real life, there are many factors involved in the nature in which loads
are applied on a material. The following are some common examples of how these loads
might be applied: tensile, compressive and shear, just to name a few. These properties are
important in materials selections for mechanical design. This report contains the results of an
experiment to determine the elastic modulus, yield point, and ultimate strength of mild steel
by using tensile test.

The tensile test is an experimental method to measure the mechanical properties of materials.
It relates the effect of a uniaxial tensile load (force) on the elongation (change in length) of a
standard specimen. The topic of this lab is confined to the tensile property of mild steel. This
test is a destructive method, in which a specimen of a standard shape and dimensions is
subjected to an axial load. The specimen used in this experiment has been prepared according
to ASTM E8/E8M: Standard Test Method for Tension Testing of Metallic Materials.

During a typical tensile experiment, a dog-bone shaped specimen is gripped at its two ends
and is pulled to elongate at a determined rate to its breakpoint. A set of data will be recorded
starting from t=0 seconds untill the specimen is completely broken. The data will be used to
calculate various properties of each material, including the elastic modulus, yield strength,
ultimate tensile strength.A plot of stress (σ) versus strain (ε) will then be constructed during
the test, which could be done automatically on the software provided by the instrument
manufacturer for analytical purpose.
2. Theory

When forces are applied to materials, they deform in reaction to those forces. The magnitude
of the deformation for a constant force depends on the geometry of the materials. Likewise,
the magnitude of the force required to cause a given deformation, depends on the geometry of
the material. For these reasons, engineers define stress and strain. Stress (engineering
definition) is given by:

σ=𝐴 (1)

Defined in this manner, the stress can be thought of as a normalized force. Strain (engineering
definition) is given by:

ε= (2)

The strain can be thought of as a normalized deformation. While the relationship between the
force and deformation depends on the geometry of the material, the relationship between the
stress and strain is geometry independent. The relationship between stress and strain is given
by a simplified form of Hooke's Law:

σ = Eε (3)

Since E is independent of geometry, it is often thought of as a material constant. However, E

is known to depend on both the chemistry, structure, and temperature of a material. Change in
any of these characteristics must be known before using a "handbook value" for the elastic

Hooke's Law (3) predicts a linear relationship between the strain and the stress and describes
the elastic response of a material. In materials where Hook's Law describes the stress-strain
relationship, the elastic response is the dominant deformation mechanism. However, many
materials exhibit nonlinear behavior at higher levels of stress. This nonlinear behavior occurs
when plasticity becomes the dominant deformation mechanism. Metals are known to exhibit
both elastic and plastic response regions. The transition from an elastic response to a plastic
response occurs at a critical point known as the yield point (σ y). Since a plastic response is
characterized by permanent deformation (bending), the yield point is an important
characteristic to know. In practice, the yield point is the stress where the stress-strain behavior
transforms from a linear relationship to a non-linear relationship. The most commonly used
method to experimentally determine the yield point is the 0.2% offset method. In this method,
a line is drawn from the point (σ =0,ε =0.2%) parallel to the linear region of the stress-strain
graph. The slope of this line is equal to the elastic modulus. The yield point is then determined
as the intersection of this line with the experimental data.

In materials that exhibit a large plastic response, the deformation tends to localize. Continued
deformation occurs only in this local region, and is known as necking. Necking begins at a
critical point known as the ultimate stress (σ ult). Since failure occurs soon after necking
begins, the ultimate stress is an important characteristic to know.

While many experimental tests exist to determine the mechanical properties, the simplest is
the tension test. A convenient sample geometry for the tensile test is the "dogbone" geometry
(Figure 1). In this test geometry, one end of the test specimen is held fixed while the other end
is pulled in uniaxial tension collinear with the long axis of the sample. The forces throughout
the sample and test machine are constant, but the stress varies with cross sectional area. The
stress reaches critical values first in the region of the sample of minimum cross section, and
the minimum cross section is in the sample. Therefore, the properties of the material are
determined in this region.

Figure 1. Dogbone specimen geometry used for tensile test.

3. Objectives

1) To experimentally determine the yield strength, tensile strength, and modules of

elasticity and ductility of chosen material.

2) To calculate the stress – strain curve from the load displacement curves.

3) To determine the relation between mechanical properties and application in wide

range industries.

4. Procedures

4.1 Specimen Preparation

1) The specimen is dogbone shaped. It was machined from mild steel stock (100mm
x 20mm x 6mm) to the geometry shown in Figure 2 by using water jet cutter, and
its dimensions was determined according to the ASTM E8/E8M.
2) The thickness, width and gage length of the specimen were measured using a pair
of vernier calipers. The error in these dimensions was ± 0.05 mm.

Figure 2. Dimensions of the specimen

4.2 Experimental Procedures

1) In order for the computer to calculate the stress applied on the specimen, the cross-
sectional dimension of the specimen must be entered into the software. To do so,
the values of width, thickness, and length of the specimen were firstly inserted into
the programme.
2) Then the specimen was clamped into the universal test machine. The specimen
was placed at the bottom grip vertically with one hand, another hand was used to
turn its handle in the closing direction as tightly as possible before closing the
upper grip. It is important that the specimen are tightly gripped onto the specimen
grips to prevent slipping, which will otherwise results in experimental errors.
3) The test was started and the specimen was loaded, resulting in a measureable
strain. This test machine is a displacement controlled machine. One end of the
sample was held at a fixed position with the other end was displaced at a constant
rate (2mm/min). The experiment was observed at a safe distance until the
specimen is broken.
4) The machine will stop automatically when the specimen is broken. A set of data
and a graph of tensile stress (MPa) versus tensile strain (mm/mm) were obtained
from the computer.
5) The specimen were then been removed from the machine, and the final length and
cross sectional area of the fractured specimen were measured.
5. Results and Calculations

5.1 Results from INSTRON Universal Testing Machine

The data from the tensile test was plotted to show the true stress-strain curve (Figure
3). The value of other important data were recorded and shown in table 1.

Figure 3: The Graph of Stress-Strain Curve of the Specimen

Maximum Load (N) 24,313.220

Tensile extension at Maximum Load (mm) 8.180
Tensile extension at Break (Standard) (mm) 12.766
Tensile strain at Maximum Load (%) 25.563
Tensile stress at Maximum Load (MPa) 506.525
Maximum Tensile extension (mm) 12.769
Tensile stress at Yield (Zero Slope) (MPa) 506.525
Maximum Slope (Automatic Young's) 9,200.943
Modulus (Automatic) (MPa) 5,281.741
Load at Break (Standard) (N) 16,345.36386
Extension at Maximum Load (mm) 8.18010
Tensile strain at Break (Standard) (mm/mm) 0.399

Table 1: Summary of Various Data Obtained From the Experiment

5.2 Specimen Geometry

Before test After test

Width 8mm 6mm
Thickness 6mm 4mm
Length 32mm 36mm
Cross-Sectional Area 0.48𝑐𝑚2 0.24𝑐𝑚2

Table 2: Specimen Geometry Before and After Test

Figure 4: Specimen After the Test

5.3 Calculations

1) Original Cross-Sectional Area = Thickness x Width

6mm x 8mm= 4.8 x 10−5 𝑚2

2) Tensile Stress at yield (zero slope) = Force at yield (N) /Cross-Sectional Area (𝑚2 )

= 24313.22𝑁 / 4.8 x 10−5 𝑚2

= 506.5254Mpa

3) Ultimate Tensile Stress = Maximum Force (N) / Cross-Sectional Area (𝑚2 )

= 24313.22𝑁 / 4.8 x 10−5 𝑚2

= 506.5254 Mpa

Δ 𝐴𝑟𝑒𝑎
4) Reduction in Area (%) = 𝑂𝑟𝑖𝑔𝑖𝑛𝑎𝑙 𝐴𝑟𝑒𝑎
0.48𝑐𝑚2 −0.24𝑐𝑚2
= x 100%

= 50 %

5) Tensile Stess at Breaking Point = Force at Break (N) / Cross-Sectional Area (𝑚2 )

= 16,345.36386 N/ 4.8 x 10−5 𝑚2

= 340.5284 Mpa

Δ 𝐿𝑒𝑛𝑔𝑡ℎ
6) Yield Strain = 𝑂𝑟𝑖𝑔𝑖𝑛𝑎𝑙 𝐿𝑒𝑛𝑔𝑡ℎ

40.18 𝑚𝑚 −32 𝑚𝑚
= 32 mm

= 0.2556
Δ 𝐿𝑒𝑛𝑔𝑡ℎ 𝑎𝑡 𝑏𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑔
7) Strain at Breaking Point = 𝑂𝑟𝑖𝑔𝑖𝑛𝑎𝑙 𝐿𝑒𝑛𝑔𝑡ℎ

44.7655 𝑚𝑚 −32 𝑚𝑚
= 32 mm

= 0.399

Maximum Load (N)

8) Breaking Factor = 𝑂𝑟𝑖𝑔𝑖𝑛𝑎𝑙 𝑇ℎ𝑖𝑐𝑘𝑛𝑒𝑠𝑠 (𝑚)
= 6 𝑥 10−3

= 4.052 x 106 N/m

𝑌𝑖𝑒𝑙𝑑 𝑆𝑡𝑟𝑒𝑠𝑠
9) Modulus of Elasticity = 𝑌𝑖𝑒𝑙𝑑 𝑆𝑡𝑟𝑎𝑖𝑛
= 0.2556

= 1981.71 Mpa
6. Discussion

The testing machine will add force slowly by the load to the specimen until the plastic
break. Maximize load and yield load can be determine from the machine scale. The
extensometer was fixed at the specimen for determining the elongation. Along the elastic
deformation until yield stress, the specimens will return back to its original size whenever the
force was removed. After the yield stress, plastic deformation will occur. This is because of
the perspective atoms and the bonding from the original atoms will stop and joined with the
neighbour’s atoms. Hence, the change involved with the big number of atoms and after the
force was removed, the specimen cannot return back to its original but has a permanent
elongation. The deformation will proper until the tensile strength limit. After this limit, the
necking phenomenon will happen. The fracture ultimately occurs at the neck. The fracture
strength corresponds to the stress at fracture

Based on the data obtained from the experiment, it shows the rates of extensions of mild
steel specimen. Ultimate tensile strength is the highest tensile strength or tensile stress a
material can experienced before it fractured. The higher the tensile strength of a material, the
harder it is. From the result, the specimen has tensile strength of 506.525 MPa. Next, the
percentage of elongation is used to represent the ductility of the material. A higher percentage
of elongation of the material means it is more ductile and it can resist more stress than the
others. Based on the results, it is observed that the specimen has 25.563% of tensile strain.
High ductility means it can be stretched longer before it deforms. Young’s Modulus is a
property that measures the amount of stress needed to produce a given strain. The higher the
value of Young’s Modulus of a material, the higher the capability of that material to resist
elastic deformation and it is more stiff and rigid. The gradient of stress-strain curves gives the
Young’s Modulus which affects the deflection of material under different loads.
7. Conclusion

Many engineering applications that require high tensile strength normally use mild steel.
This is because of the crystalline structure of mild steel that allows it to withstand high axial
loads before fracture can occur. As a conclusion, based on this tensile experiment, The elastic
modulus, yield point, and ultimate stress of mild steel were determined in uniaxial tension.
The dogbone specimen geometry was used. At low forces, the dominant response was
realignment and rotation of the test fixture. At high forces, deformation of the sample was the
dominant response. The specimen elongated about 12.7 mm from the original length. Besides
that, the yield stress of this experiment is 506.525 MPa. By referring to the graph, the ultimate
stress point occurred at 506.525 MPa with the extension of 8.180 mm. The breaking factor for
this specimen is 4.052 x 106 N/m. From the result and the calculation, the tensile stress is
506.525 MPa and the yield strain is 0.2556. From that the modulus of Elasticity, E is 1981.71
Mpa. Overall, the objective has been achieved.

1. Van Vlack, L.H., Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering - 6th Edition,
Addison Wesley, 1989, p 8.
2. Smith,W.F., Principles of Materials Science and Engineering - 2nd Edition, McGraw
Hill, 1990, p 255.
3. Seward, D. (2014) Understanding Structures. Analysis, Materials, Design. 5th ed.
Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
4. Vernon, J. (1992) Testing of Materials. Basingstoke: Macmillan.


GROUP : EM220 7A5

Prepared by :






Prepared for : DR. ANIZAH KALAM