Dia-Stron’s heritage lies in the development of scientific instrumentation for in-vivo skin testing applications. Soon after the company’s formation, the requirement for fast and reliable hair testing was realised and the company’s focus adjusted accordingly. Although today we still maintain a bespoke skin instrumentation range, it is our hair measurement expertise into which we have grown.
From the very first system developments, we have expanded into a wider range of applications for other fibres and filaments. We have always been proud of our ability to innovate in the field of fibre testing; our first product launch in the late 1980s was a miniature tensile tester with a micro-processor control and digital data output into a basic software package. This was hugely advanced for the time and allowed flexibility within the measurement process, allowing new protocols and configurations to be developed. This had a huge advantage over previous electro-mechanical based testers.
The Need for Automation
The flexibility afforded by this new system created a huge impact on the tensile testing of single hairs. Traditionally, single fibre testing was carried out with the manual mounting and testing of each hair. In 1992 we introduced our automated tensile tester: a cassette based system that allowed up to 100 single fibres to be measured in an automated sequence, without any need for manual reloading.
This made the entire process more time efficient, with users reporting notable benefits in terms of productivity and quality of data. Our advancement in streamlining the process was instantly recognised and soon became the new industry standard, for both personal care companies and chemical suppliers across the globe.
Next Steps to Innovate
Once the industry had adopted our automation systems, the only way was forward. Since then we’ve constantly driven innovations for our customers’ ever changing requirements – most notably by widening our module options beyond tensile testing to include dimensions, fatigue, bending and torsional testing. As well as incorporating automation into our product line, we also integrated different diameter measurement modules, as a response to the essential nature of dimensional data for accurate mechanical evaluation.
The latest automated LEX-Laser Diffraction system epitomises our approach. It’s a complete system with integrated diameter and tensile measurement combined with automated sample handling. This demonstrates our dedication to easy-to-use systems and has been developed for high performance fibre/filaments to reflect this growing market.
Since the beginning, we’ve constantly strived to innovate and develop new and improved fibre measurement techniques and approaches while still producing results of the highest quality.