Technology: Unilorin don invents equipment for determining hardenability of steel

Technology: Unilorin don invents equipment for determining hardenability of steel

By Fatima Mohammed-Lawal

AREWA AGENDA – Prof Jacob Aweda, of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Technology, University of Ilorin has designed and evaluated Jominy End Quencher apparatus for the determination of the hardenability of steel materials.

Aweda disclosed this on Friday, during his paper presentations at the 217th Inaugural Lecture of the University entitled: “Engineering Technology and Manipulation of Process Parameters”.

He explained that hardenability of steel is the property of material that determines the depth of the hardness of the material when cooled in a desirable quenchant from its austenitizing temperature.

The expert who teaches at the Faculty of Engineering and Technology, added that this is measured through the determination of the depth of hardness of the standard size and shape of the steel in a controlled standardized environment, which the apparatus is used for.

He pointed out that in many research centres and tertiary institutions, appropriate testing equipment is either not easily available or obsolete.

“Added to this is the cost of testing which is enormous, charges are high where necessary equipment are available.

‘This may probably be due to high initial cost of procurement and high cost of maintenance of such equipment. If access to research equipment is readily available and at affordable cost, the risk of travelling long distances and paying so much for material evaluation will reduce.

“Currently, due to non availability of required laboratory equipment, many researchers send out test samples outside the country resulting in the reduction of the number of samples required for testing which may not be good representative of the overall result,” he said.

Aweda observed that non availability of appropriate equipment hampers research and teaching in the country.

Similarly, the don also developed Creep measuring apparatus with heating chamber.

According to him, this is an improvement on the existing apparatus without heating chamber usually applied for the measurement of creep at room temperature.

“The one developed can measure creep at both room and elevated temperature. Two separate creep measuring apparatus were developed each for the measurement of creep in tension and compression loads application,” he said.

Aweda advocated relationship between Universities and industries, saying this will ensure thriving industries and more support in research.

He also called for the revival of technical education laying emphasis on entrepreneurship skills from the lower level to higher level. (NAN)