Services for Business and Industry

The CHART project has been part funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the University of Birmingham. This investment has further developed and extended the University of Birmingham’s Centre for Electron Microscopy (CEM). As a result, the University, through the CHART project, is able to offer these world class facilities to West Midlands manufacturing SMEs in order to support innovation and promote efficiency in the region.

Mobile Service

The CHART project offers a mobile service using the portable equipment on the project which is ideal for bringing our services to you.

Our portable equipment includes:

  • Bruker S2 Ranger Xray Fluorescence
  • Hitachi TM3030 – Portable Scanning Electron Microscope
  • Met Prep – Metallographic Microscope
  • Zwick – ZHR4150AK Rockwell – Hardness Tester
  • Zeiss Axioskop 2 – Optical Microscope

Materials Analysis

CHART has world class equipment for West Midlands manufacturing SMEs to access in order to solve a variety of different analytical and developmental needs.

  • Scanning Transmission Electron Microscope (S/TEM) – can be used to produce images that reveal atomic structure, defects, grain and interfaces of solid materials.
  • Optical Tomography – CHART has state of the art serial sectioning machines that allow for the investigation of material defects, precipitates and voids in a matter of days rather than months.
  • Micro-CT – Excellent for delicate, non-destructive internal structure analysis.
  • Xray Fluorescence (XRF) – This advanced portable piece of equipment allows for the investigation of the elemental make up of samples.


The CHART project runs workshops for West Midlands SMEs to learn more about the benefits of materials characterisation to their business.

Workshops run several times throughout the year, check back here for details of the next one or contact us to find out more. Or click below to register:


The School of Metallurgy and Materials has a number of expert research groups:

Access to Equipment

Through the CHART project, West Midlands SMEs, especially those who have an interest in advanced manufacturing techniques, can access academic and technical support at the University of Birmingham.

There is also a raft of world class equipment for SMEs to access for practically any analysis needed.

For more information about what support is available, please contact us.