Material Science

FTIR Analysis Proves Manufacturing Defect

03 February 2022

An automotive warehouse had a building less than a year old when most of their LED lights began to fail. Before any investigation took place, the LED light manufacturer attributed the failure to the fumes from the products stored in the warehouse.

Envista’s materials science expert was called in to perform testing of the lights and was able to determine that the failure was occurring in the LED printed circuit boards where the LEDs were mounted.  The boards were then sent to Envista’s Materials Lab for a Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy analysis.

The FTIR analysis revealed that there were no foreign chemicals contributing to the failure of the LEDs, and that the failure was a result of overheating from an internal defect. 

Envista’s findings were reported to the client and the manufacturer and in turn, the manufacturer had to replace all defective light fixtures, at no cost to the client, saving them over $300,000.

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About The Author
Matthew Senn
Matthew Senn, PE
Practice Leader

Mr. Matthew Senn is the Practice Leader of Energy and a licensed Professional Engineer with a strong background in Renewable Energy power generation (Megawatt class wind turbines). With over 14 years of experience in wind turbine construction, commissioning, upgrades, operation and service he understands the utility-grade wind turbine from top to bottom. He specializes in failure analysis of low-voltage, high-power generators/motors and their associated control systems. He has experience analyzing failed deep-groove ball bearings installed on generators and motors. He has performed root cause analysis on large gauge insulated conductor cables, high-power vacuum tube contactors, generator slip rings with carbon brushes, power factor correction capacitors and ultrasonic anemometers. He has experience designing installation of motor current monitoring systems, condition monitoring systems, large gauge conductor cable repair and engineered tower power and light systems. He has assisted in the development of electrical safety lock-out/tag-out programs and authored many repair instructions for electrical components. At Envista, he has led or assisted in the technical investigation of over 32 wind turbine losses.

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