The Purpose of UV Exposure Testing

Understanding the purpose of UV exposure testing will certainly help you with your new product line. What you may not know is that your product needs to be put through a number of different tests before it can be released on to the market, UV exposure testing is one of them.

The weather can seriously affect the longevity of a product. Many elements can affect the way in which the materials used will deteriorate. Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to stop this from happening, all you can do is make sure to equip yourself with the correct knowledge. One of the tests that needs to be conducted is UV exposure testing but what exactly is its purpose? This type of testing will simply expose your product to the effects that can occur when exposed to photo-induce degradation. Basically, no matter how strong you think your product is it can be extremely sensitive to this exposure. During the testing a chemical reaction known as photolysis is created. This reaction can affect the following:

· Colour fastness (how long the colour will remain the same)

· Brittleness

· Fading

· Cracking

The testing is conducted over a period of time and is accelerated. Obviously, this acceleration needs to occur so as to show exactly how the product will hold up to the exposure to UV overtime. It provides realistic and accurate results on exactly what you can expect your product to look like at the end of three months, a year and so on. Although it is a controlled environment it will place your product in the most extreme of situations. Some machines have been designed so as to test specimens to the equivalent of noon summer sunlight for 24 hours a day, every day. Subsequently, this type of expose will accelerate the natural degradation of the specimen and provide you with the information you need on how long it will take for your materials to suffer under pressure.

In conjunction with the UV exposure other weather elements are normally tested. This will include rain, fog and dew. What you may not be aware of, is the fact that the amount of water exposure can affect the overall outcome. The effects or rain, for example are not the same as the effects from dew. Like the controlled UV tests, moisture tests can also be controlled. The testing machines in this case will condense the humidity and water spray to realistically replicate the dew and rain. Rain and dew can affect how quickly the product will rust and is therefore a necessary test to be conducted. In most cases it is best to use a machine that can conduct both of these test simultaneously, swapping between the two so as to provide a more natural exposure.

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