Category Archives: Presentations

Larry Hanke and Dan Grice will be presenting a talk on A Historical Perspective of Fracture Analysis at the February 19 ASM Symposium at Hennepin Technical College.  The theme of the symposium is “Materials Retrospect: 100 Years of Advancement” in recognition of the 100th anniversary of the MN chapter of ASM International. Other presentations at the event will cover topics such as advancements in the casting industry, metal additive manufacturing and breakthroughs in nitinol in medical device design.

Larry and Dan’s presention will review the history of fractography, including the historical development of the science, changes in the analytical tools, and some historical case histories.
The effective use of materials in various engineering applications requires an understanding of material properties, including conditions of material failure. Fracture is behavior that must be taken into account. The study of fractures over the years has had an important role in materials engineering to improve product performance and reliability.

Dan Grice, P.E. and Larry Hanke, P.E.

Failure Analysis Presentation

posted February 2017

Larry Hanke and Dan Grice will be presenting at the  Minnesota Section of ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers) Spring Symposium on March 15 in Plymouth MN.

Wind Generator Blade Failure

Wind Generator Blade Failure

The title of this year’s symposium is “Failure, Test and Modeling Tools in Engineering Design”. Larry and Dan’s presentation will cover advice on field practices to prepare for failure analysis, laboratory test methods for evaluation of mechanical behavior and corrosion, failure analysis tasks useful for product improvement efforts, examples of the analysis of field failures and laboratory test specimens, and the application of test data to product development.


MEE Materials Engineer, Neal Hanke, recently spoke at the International Association of Arson Investigators Training Conference in Orlando Florida. Neal’s presentation on Materials Analysis in Fire Investigation was part of a 4 hour course on Arc Mapping: Continued Research and Updates. The conference is attended by fire investigators, scientists, engineers, insurance adjusters and attorneys from around the world.

Neal’s presentation was designed to provide a better understanding of what a materials science engineer can add to the investigation of a structural fire and some of the methods used in the laboratory. The materials science engineer’s contribution to a fire investigation typically has a quite narrow focus, but can provide enlightening information that can help in the investigation on the progression and possibly the cause of the fire.


Failure Analysis Presentation

posted January 2016

Larry Hanke and Dan Grice recently presented a talk on the application of CT imaging for failure analysis and laboratory services to the of technical staff and sales representatives of one of our vendors.

Typical failure analysis tasks always include a visual examination, SEM/EDS examination and microstructure analysis. Three-dimensional X-ray imaging (CT scanning) has become another important tool for failure analysis.

Contact MEE  to discuss your failure analysis project. Failure analysis and advanced research projects are directed by registered professional engineers specializing in the behavior of materials and how their structure affects service performance.


Last week, Larry Hanke presented a paper co-authored with Dieter Scholz at the 2015 Microscopy Society of America (MSA) annual meeting in Portland, Oregon. The presentation, Microstructure Enhancement Using Ion Beam Milling, was based on work done in our laboratory preparing challenging samples for microscopic evaluation.

These images show a gold ball bond on an integrated circuit. In the top image we see the sample after it was mechanically prepared/polished. The next image was taken after the sample was ion milled.

- As polished

– As polished

 - Ion Milled

– Ion Milled

Microscopic inspection for device quality assurance, failure analysis, and materials characterization relies on optimum sample preparation to produce accurate and useful data. Good sample preparation for medical devices, semiconductors, microelectronics, and nano-materials has become more challenging in recent years due to high-technology materials, complex assemblies, and smaller components. Although mechanical cross sectioning, polishing, and chemical etching are sufficient for many applications, ion beam milling provides an additional level of quality and clarity for critical and difficult-to-prepare samples.

Broad-Beam Ion Milling

posted June 2015

Senior Scientist, Dieter Scholz, spent a day at the SMTA (Surface Mount Technology Association) 2015 Midwest Expo talking with attendees about the advantages of the Broad-Beam Ion Milling. Ion Beam Milling provides an additional level of quality and clarity for critical and difficult-to-prepare samples. It is particularly useful for cross sections of semi-conductor devices, sectioning of soft materials or soft-hard material combinations or materials difficult to chemically etch.

Dieter and Larry Hanke will be presenting a paper,  Microstructure Enhancement Using Ion Beam Milling, at the Microscopy and Microanalysis 2015 Meeting in Portland OR in August.

Contact us or visit our website for more information on Broad-Beam Ion Milling.


ion mill booth


Principal Engineer, Larry Hanke, spoke at the spring seminar of the Wisconsin chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI) on materials analysis for fire investigations The purpose of the presentation was to describe and demonstrate what a metallurgical engineer can add to the investigation of a structural fire or explosion. His presentation included an overview of important principles of metallurgical and materials science,  descriptions of the analytical methods used in finding the modes of failure, and case studies of investigations at MEE where material science has been instrumental in the investigation.

The following image was taken at MEE using a metallographic microscope.

Melting from electrical arcing on corrugated stainless steel tubing perforation

Melting from electrical arcing on corrugated stainless steel tubing perforation