Metallurgical Investigations

HFI investigates failures involving a wide range of metals and metal alloys, encompassing a wide variety of failure mechanisms, across a broad range of industries.


HFI can undertake Metallurgical investigations on site, or alternatively can be sent failed components to examine in-house.

We have in-house inspection facilities for conducting microscopic examinations and workshop facilities for dismantling equipment or for undertaking bespoke testing.

HFI has strong links with external test laboratories should Metallurgical analysis or Metallurgical testing of a failed component be required.

We routinely undertake Metallurgical investigations to determine the root cause of a failure, often to assist insurers in making policy decisions about liability and recovery.

We also routinely conduct Metallurgical investigations and prepare expert reports for the court in civil claims that might result in giving oral expert witness evidence.

HFI tailors its investigations to client requirements and offers a range of reporting options from brief, preliminary appraisal reports to detailed court reports.


The explosive failure of a vessel caused by fatigue cracking of a weld.

 Leakage from a stainless-steel biomass digester vessel due to corrosion.

Fatigue fracture of tow hitch bolts resulting in the detachment of a trailer causing a fatal road traffic accident.

Detachment of the jib of a crane due to the failure of its slewing ring bearing.

Fracture of a cast iron gas main due to fissure corrosion that caused a gas explosion.

The collapse of a storage silo due to corrosion of its supporting structure.