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The PROTHERM platform is a technical platform composed of laboratory instruments for the experimental characterization of materials. This platform is mostly used by researchers of the OPTIMISTHE theme, but also available to researchers of other themes (OSED and QAI-STA) and to the company THEMACS Engineering (under convention with the UPEC). In addition, this platform can be used for services. The devices constituting this technical platform are either commercial devices or experimental devices designed and manufactured at CERTES. These devices can be grouped into several categories.

Thermophysical Characterization Devices

Hot-Disk
Commercial device for the measurement (in transient regime) of the thermal conductivity and diffusivity of various materials (polymers, composites, metals, building materials, minerals and ceramics). The device is coupled to an oven allowing measurements from room temperature up to 300 ° C.

DICO
Device developed by the CERTES allowing the measurement of the conductivity and the thermal diffusivity in periodic regime. This device is used for weakly conductive materials: polymers, composites, wood, gypsum, concrete, glasses and allows measurements from -20 ° C to + 120 ° C. The measurements can also be performed at different pressures (between 1000 and 10-4 mbar). An extension of the method allowing the characterization of anisotropic materials is under development.

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PCGT – Guarded Hot-Plate in transient mode
Device developed by the CERTES allowing the measurement of the thermal resistance of samples or to carry out thermal cycles adapted to the study of the storage / destocking of energy of samples including Phase Change Materials (PCM)

FISOMP
This device allows studying the fusion-crystallization kinetics of Phase Change Materials (PCM). A fast high resolution camera allows the tracking of fusion fronts.

Thermal Analysis Devices

DSC (Perkin-Elmer)
This apparatus allows the measurement of the specific heat capacity of materials or the determination of the phase transition temperatures and enthalpies of materials. It allows the characterization of any type of samples from -130 ° C to 600 ° C. Only quantities of a few tens of milligrams can be studied.

ATG (Perkin-Elmer)
This apparatus allows a follow-up of the evolution of the mass of samples of a few tens of milligrams as a function of the temperature. The applications are for example the determination of the degradation temperature of materials or the measurement of water content. This device can be coupled to the FTIR spectrometer of the laboratory so as to perform in parallel an analysis of gaseous compounds emitted as a function of temperature.

DMA (TA Instruments)

This device allows measurement of the viscosity or shear modulus of materials as a function of frequency and temperature. This allows the study of phase transitions and mechanical relaxations in materials, especially in polymers and composite materials.

Spectromètre Diélectrique (AMTEK)
This device allows measurement of the dielectric permittivity of materials (in the form of thin films) as a function of frequency and temperature. This allows the study of phase transitions and dielectric relaxations in materials, including polymers and composite materials.

Optical Characterization Devices

UV-Visible-NIR Spectrometer (Perkin-Elmer Lambda)
This spectrometer allows measurements in the spectral band ranging from 190 nm to 2500 nm. It is equipped with an integrating sphere, which makes it possible to carry out measurements of transmission and specular or diffuse reflexion.

FTIR Spectrometer (Perkin-Elmer Frontier)
This spectrometer allows measurements in the spectral band ranging from 1.5 to 40 μm. Various accessories are available for measuring transmission or specular reflection, absorption measurements of solid or liquid materials (ATR device) and gases. In addition, an integrating sphere provided with a cooled MCT detector makes it possible to carry out reflectance and emissivity measurements.

Portable Emissometers EM1 et EM2
These portable devices have been developed for on-site pavement characterization. They can also be used in the laboratory or for measurements on building walls. Two spectral bands are available (1-40μm or 7-14μm).

SPIDER

This device, still under development, allows to measure directional emissivity (variations of emissivity as a function of emission angle). The device has been validated for different types of materials (metals, polymers, glass). It is being validated for building materials and infrastructure (mineral materials with high granularity).

Infrared cameras and Non-Destructive Testing using IR Thermography

Infrared Cameras
PROTHERM platform uses several IR cameras:

  • Portable FLUKE TI32 camera, microbolometers, 7 – 14µm, 320 x 240 pixels
  • FLIR A325 camera, microbolometers, 7 – 14µm, 320 x 240 pixels
  • FLIR SC7000 camera, Stirling cooled detector, 7.7 – 9.2µm, 320 x 256 pixels

Non-Destructive Testing
An active infrared thermography NDT test bench allows the detection of defects in different kinds of materials (polymers, composites, building materials and road infrastructure, heritage materials). Thermal excitation of materials can be performed using halogen lamps (up to 4 x 500W) or Flash (up to 4 x 3200 J).