Norner microscopy laboratory

Microscopy analysis

The microscopy laboratory provide customers with a wide range of services. Our experts use optical and electron microscopy to investigate, structure, failure analysis, degradation and problem solving. 

Norner microscopy techniques:

  • Scanning Electron Microscope
  • Contact angle measurement
  • Light microscopy
  • Optical microscopy

  Send us a request  


Read more about other testing service areas.

Norner performs contact angle measurement, including dynamic contact angle

In our microscopy laboratory we have equipment to perform contact angle measurement, including dynamic contact angle. 

The technique is relevant for all issues regarding surface energy and wetting of solid surfaces including film.


Some test methods: 

  • Testing of the wettability for various liquids on any solid surface
  • Development of hydrophobic or hydrophilic materials
  • Optimization of coating, painting, cleaning and printing processes
  • Characterization of surface pre-treatment processes  

The method includes different liquids, exemplified by water, diiodomethane and yoghurt. 


With our new equipment we can offer a high-quality service within this field.  Our laboratory has the insight to make microscopy investigation to provide documentation of materials and products.

Norner has the insight to make microscopy investigation and failure analysis

Our microscopy analysis experts use a wide range of microscopy technology and techniques to investigate microscopic surface.

We investigate and identify failures and challenges in all segments, from gas to plastics and end use products in our Internationally recognised microscopy laboratory.

We have the insight to make microscopy investigation provide documentation of the following materials and products.

  • Plastics parts and packaging
  • Injection-, blow- and rotational moulding, extruded pipe, cable insulation, films, laminates, compounds and alloys
  • Metals and inorganic materials
  • Catalysts, polymer powders, morphology and homogeneity

Complex customer problems can be handled by identification of root causes with a variety of suitable laboratory techniques. This is useful for claim investigation, failure analysis and documentation. 

Norner offers advanced sample preparation and various microscopy failure analysis techniques. Our laboratory is able to investigate and identify challenges within the whole value chain. 

Typical causes for failure in plastics

  • Mechanical strain, pressure burst
  • Chemical stress cracking
  • Gels and inhomogeneity, contaminations, inclusions 
  • Stress introduced by processing or mould/product design
  • Recommended service conditions
  • Misuse and traces of wrong handling and intended damage
  • Weakness in product design
  • Crystal morphology, microstructures, fracture surfaces, bulk and surface structures
  • Flow patterns of build in stresses in plastic parts
  • Distribution of different phases in complex materials
  • Distribution/dispersion of pigments, fillers and carbon black
  • Product and material imperfections like poor surface plainness, blisters, nibs, voids, contaminations, notches, micro cracks, breakage, discoloration

Typical causes for failure in metals

  • Carburization / decarburization 
  • Stress relaxation cracking and stress corrosion cracking 
  • Fatigue, corrosion fatigue, overload and creep damage
  • Hydrogen and Sigma phase embrittlement
  • Corrosion in metals
  • Dealloying and Liquid metal embrittlement

Norner uses advanced instruments to identify and determine causes and solutions for failure analysis

  • Bulk composition of a material or compound
  • Identification of inclusions and gels
  • Oxidation stability
  • Identification of polymeric contaminants and chemical attacks
  • Identification and amount of specific additives, odour and outgassing
  • Measurement of Carbonyl peak to detect oxidation/degradation
  • Polymer compositions, crystallinity and detection of foreign components

Norner can support the investigation further by test methods 

  • Impact resistance
  • Stress crack
  • Fatigue testing
  • Weld properties
  • Tensile modulus
Norner has equipment to perform microscopy analysis of plastic films

Norner microscopy laboratory analyse film structure, polymers, gels, seal quality and integrity to determine whether it is suitable for its intended use.

A key competence area of Norner is our advanced packaging development centre including film extrusion lines, MDO line, injection moulding and EBM machinery and a flexible and rigid packaging test centre with physical and analytical services.

 Multilayer structure and composition

  •  We can analyse film structure and polymer composition down to a very detailed level through combining the following strategies.
  •  Sample preparation by microtome cutting of film cross sections.
  •  Number of layers and thicknesses by light microscopy.
  •  FTIR analyses of the whole structure as well as the inner and outer surfaces.
  •  FTIR microscopy for analysing the type of polymer in each layer of the structure.
  •  Hot stage Microscopy to determine the melting temperature and behaviour of each layer.
  •  DSC analysis to determine the exact melting points of the structure.
  •  SEM analysis for investigation of surface structures, inorganic fillers or aspects like laser score lines and perforations.
  •  Material identification can be further supported by various polymer analysis.

Gel investigations

  • Gels and inclusions are a classic problem of film production which can have a negative impact in several ways on the quality of flexible packaging. We have a long experience in identification and root cause analysis of gels by microtome preparations to reveal the cross section of gels followed by microscopy investigations and other polymer analysis, if required.

Analysis of seal quality and integrity

  • By investigating the cross sections of seals we can identify and validate the quality and integrity of seals in flexible packaging.
Norner uses incident light and transmitted light microscopy

The microscopy lab has a number of microscopes using different techniques. We use incident light and transmitted light. Incident light microscopy is widely for surface analysis. Transmitted light microscopy is mostly used for morphological studies. Combination of these techniques give full services within research and development, failure analysis and trouble shooting for internal and external customers.

Macroscopic techniques

  • Macrophoto/reprophoto
  • Photo macroscope
  • Stereo microscope

Microscopy techniques

  • Optical/light microscope


 Contrast techniques for optical microscopy

Incident light

Transmitted ligth

 Ligth field



 Dark Field



 Polarized ligth






 Differential Interference Contrast







The different contrast techniques will contribute to more complete understanding of the material.

Quality assurance

We strongly recommend “pre-check” by our experts, inspecting your product and or production designs before releasing products to the market.  

Nobody likes failure, but one can learn much from solving problems. Norner has more than 40 years of experience in failure analyses and advanced material characterization. From our long experience with materials and products we have learned to recognize weak points much before these leads to product-failure under use.  


We offer:

  • Advanced microscopy analyses
  • Prototype product evaluations
  • Evaluation of mould designs
  • Evaluation of material use in challenging environments
  • Environmental exposure
  • Recycling evaluations
Norner has advanced microscopy laboratory and provide sample preparation

In the field of microscopy the sample preparation is at least half the work. The results from the microscopy investigation is totally dependent of high quality sample preparation. In Norners microscopy lab we are fully equipped for many kind of materials and sample types.


Microscopy equipment:

  • Precision saws
  • Microtomes
  • Cryo microtome
  • Equipment for mounting of samples
  • Grinding and polishing equipment
  • Ionepolisher
  • Sputter coater

With this equipment we can provide samples for all our different techniques. Method of preparation of samples will depend on material and scope of work. Our engineers have competence and experience with all kind of polymers and also a variety of other materials like metals, ceramics and composites etc.

Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) is used for element mapping and visualization

Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) services is used for element mapping and visualization, surface finish, contaminations, failure and fracture investigation in all kind of solid materials.

Our laboratory has the insight to make microscopy investigation to provide documentation of materials and products.  The SEM (Scanning-Electron-Microscope) is a special useful instrument when it comes to investigate and provide documentation of materials and products.

SEM-EDS testing areas 

  • Consultations and problem solving
  • Product and material imperfections
  • Weakness in product design
  • Material and surface structures
  • Flow patterns build in stresses in plastic parts
  • Crystal structures
  • Powder morphology
  • Element analysis
  • Phase distribution of inhomogeneous materials  

Together with our knowledge and experience Norner can offer a full-range analysis of organic and in-organic materials. We support all levels within research and development, operation and failure analysis.  We can offer a broad and high-quality service within this field.

  Send us a request  


Read more about other testing service areas.

In focus

Developed by Aplia - Powered by eZ PublishPrivacy

This site uses cookies. Read more about cookies here. Do not show this message again.

Hide >>