Rheology and materials characterisation

The Rheology and Materials Characterisation Laboratory supports materials and processing research in Australia. We specialise in food, polymers, mineral slurries, sludge rheology, various materials processing and characterisation.

We engage in multidisciplinary research, consulting and educational activities in rheology, processing and materials science and technology for industry and the wider community in Australia and overseas at an international standard. Our research is conducted through short- and long-term collaborations with many leading industries, research institutions and universities, at national and at international levels.

Our members have strong track records of solving industrial and commercial problems for companies including AMIRA, AMCOR, AngloGold Ashanti, Cryovac, Coffey Mining, Melbourne Water, South East Water, Plantic and RioTinto.

What is rheology?

Rheology is the study of flow and deformation of materials, in liquid, melt or solid form, in terms of their elasticity and viscosity. Rheological characterisation provides a precise means for measuring intrinsic material properties that can be related to a material’s processing characteristics and performance.

Rheology brings together researchers from chemical engineering, civil and environmental engineering, mechanical and manufacturing engineering, physics, chemistry, food science, environmental science, mathematics, polymer science, process control, materials science.

Rheology testing can be used to characterise: liquids (viscous), solid (elastic) or solid-liquid (viscoelastic). Rheology testing can analyse:

  • minerals concentrate or mine tailings
  • polymers
  • food (e.g. cheese, toothpaste, chocolate)
  • composites (fibres and fillers reinforced)
  • soft solids
  • foam
  • wet or dry
  • dispersion
  • emulsion
  • suspension
  • waste water
  • slurry.

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