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Materials testing

The Devon County Council Materials Laboratory provides a testing service on a variety of road and building materials to ensure they meet British and European standards including elements relating to safety. The Laboratory is accredited (Quality Assured), for a major part of it’s testing under the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS).

The Laboratory provides a vital service to engineers for both new and existing works, ensuring that materials used will not jeopardise public safety, will meet a variety of criteria, such as durability and noise levels and will provide value for money.

The two main areas of technical work are materials testing and soils mechanics.

Materials are tested for various reasons, for example: asphalts (“tarmac”), concrete, road, footway and flooring surfaces for measurement of slip/skid resistance; road marking for performance; fencing and bridge timber, crash barrier components for safety and stability.

Soil mechanics involves surveys to advise on foundation type, for example, for schools, road construction thickness, earthwork suitability, etc. for soil strength and permeability.

The Laboratory provides this service principally to the County Council but the service is also available to other local authorities and private customers for a fee. Enquiries for specific areas of testing can be submitted to materials.laboratory@devon.gov.uk.