Coatings provide critical asset protection in some of the harshest operating environments within the global Oil & Gas sector. With advanced coating materials being introduced at an ever greater pace, the need to understand how they will perform once deployed in the field is essential.

Understanding the properties of coating products and systems is critical to the future integrity of those assets deployed in the Oil & Gas sector. Measuring the lifetime insulation performance of flowline systems and their resistance to cathodic disbondment or salt spray corrosion properties, enables our customers to make informed decisions about their products and processes whether they are to be used in subsea or marine end applications.

Element is a recognised leader in the provision of oil and gas coatings testing, inspection and advisory services.

Our team of globally located Engaged Experts conduct an extensive range of environmental simulations in a range of technical disciplines to provide accurate and reliable data on the ability of coatings to protect against corrosion, ultraviolet light, water penetration, heat, abrasion and chemicals.

Element provides a comprehensive range of coatings testing services and evaluation that range from the large scale simulation of deepwater environments in pressure cells to application tests including peel strength, hot water immersion, impact testing, indentation, adhesion testing and also materials characterization tests such as creep and thermal conductivity.

Our testing incorporates standard pre-qualification coatings testing such as cathodic disbondment (for which Element has one of the largest capacities of any independent laboratory, with over 300 test types). This is supplemented with high level polymer testing, using various exposure techniques; high temperature high pressure autoclaves, UV and xenon exposures.

Difficult operating environments pose particular problems for meeting aging and marine coatings performance standards.

Element is currently the only independent testing facility to be accredited for both the IMO and PSPC test protocols, and is at the forefront of the latest Ballast Water Treatment protocol. This is combined with our comprehensive NORSOK M501 testing capability, an aging specification that uses long term exposure to field conditions to assess heavy duty coatings suitable for the harshest environments.  

The aging test uses a combination of salt spray, UV and freezing as a cyclic test, alongside water immersion and cathodic disbondment. We also provide specialist protective coatings testing services to the aerospace and defence sectors.

We use a wide range of coatings testing methodologies and instrumentation to perform our tests. These include Scanning Electron microscopes (SEM); Gas Chromatograph (GC); Ion Chromatograph (IC); High Pressure Liquid Chromatograph (HPLC); Gas Chromatograph - Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS); Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectrometers. We test to ASTM D610, ASTM D1475, ASTM D4587, AWWA D102, ASTM D714, GM9540P, and SAE J400 standards to make certain that the paints produced by the manufacturers are quality in order to reduce costly returns and recalls.

Our Engaged Experts consistently provide accurate and reliable data regarding material properties, allowing clients to develop new types of coatings; validate the integrity of coatings and in the process help solve, mitigate and prevent coatings related problems occurring in the Oil & Gas sector.

Whether they are applied on pipelines, oil rigs, chemical plants or ships, Element has the skills to help protect your most critical assets.

Element’s coatings testing experts provide:


DSC & DMA Testing

Using DSC the heat flow and temperature of a sample can be measured to investigate the temperature dependent behavior as well as specific heat capacity. DMA is a technique for investigating the temperature and frequency depend behavior. DMA can be used to determine:

  • Film/tension behavior
  • Damping
  • Glass transition temperature
  • Softening temperature
  • Cure behavior
  • Rectangular torsion and shear modules
Element can also measure the thermal conductivity of insulation materials according to recognized international and industry standards.

Cathodic Disbondment Testing

Cathodic disbondment is the loss of adhesion between the coating and a metal substrate, as a result of corrosion of the substrate beneath the coating. The purpose of this test is to investigate the behavior of the adhesion of the coating to the substrate when exposed to a controlled corrosive environment.


Physical Properties Testing

Element paint testing labs help manufacturers evaluate their paint or coating products' properties and performance potential. Tests and capabilities include: paint adhesion, paint thickness, flexibility, impact resistance, and hardness. Paint or coating deformulation or material identification is a valuable testing service provided by Element experts.


Mechanical Testing

Mechanical testing characterizes the elastic and inelastic behavior of a material when force is applied. A mechanical test shows whether a material or part is suitable for this intended mechanical applications by measuring:

  • Elasticity
  • Tensile and compression strength
  • Elongation
  • Hardness
  • Fracture toughness
  • Impact resistance
  • Stress rupture
  • Flexibility
  • Adhesion strength
  • Indentation resistance
  • Abrasion resistance
  • Fatigue limit

Accelerated Weathering

Exposure to light, heat, humidity and other environmental conditions provides critical data for predicting paint or coating performance and lifespan. Tests and capabilities include: Fluorescent UV (QUV), basic irradiance spray, controlled irradiance spray, Xenon Arc testing, controlled humidity testing, any test combined with cyclic corrosion testing.


Accelerated Corrosion Resistance and Testing

Protecting materials and products from corrosion is an important function for surface treatments like paints and coatings. Element paint testing lab experts subject samples to various corrosive environments to evaluate paint and coating performance. Tests and capabilities include: Salt Spray or ASTM B117, humidity, cyclic corrosion, fog and salt fog, dry environment, controlled temperature and humidity testing, immersion testing, Rotary and Vertical Dip / Dry.


Environmental Exposure Testing

How will your products perform in the real world? Environmental simulation and exposure provides answers that allow manufacturers to plan for successful, cost-effective products and processes. Environmental lab tests and capabilities include: Controlled Temperature / Humidity, ovens to 260°C (500°F), furnaces to 1100°C (2000°F), freezers to -100°C (-150°F), chemical compatibility, Gravelometer testing, thermal cycle testing, thermal shock testing, autoclave testing.


Coatings Types

The type of coatings we test include:

  • Bituminous tape coatings
  • Petrolatum and wax tape coatings
  • Polymeric tape coatings
  • Heat shrinkable coatings
  • Elastomeric coatings
  • Fusion bonded epoxy powder coatings
  • Liquid applied coatings
  • Polyolefin based coatings (hot applied)
  • Thermal spray aluminum

Accreditations and Standards

We operate in accordance with all of the applicable local, national, regional and international standards. In particular our laboratories comply with an operate to all of the rele-vant ISO, ASTM, and EN standards that govern testing, inspection and certification service providers.

  • ISO21809- 1,2,3 and 4
  • NACE RP0394
  • CSA Z245.20 Series-10
  • ISO 12736
  • Client specific standards

Coatings Service Are Available From

Our full range of coating testing services are available from:

  • Element Amsterdam
  • Element Houston
  • Element Hitchin
  • Element New Berlin


Our team of over 6,700 Engaged Experts in North America, Europe, The Middle East, Australia, Asia and Africa are ready to help you.

Make an inquiry today