Images of Failed Components

Performing failure analysis – resolving materials, weld, vibration, fatigue and other operational issues to prevent recurrence. Ensuring structural integrity, and maximizing equipment reliability & controlling costs for owners/ users.

Our Team of Engineers has investigated the root cause of failures due to thermal/ transients, vibrations, thermal fatigue, weld failures and more.

Applications include aluminum, stainless steels, titanium, nickel based and exotic alloys used in aircraft, ships, petrochemical plants, industrial machinery, automotive components, tanks, food processing equipment, ASME boilers and pressure vessels, process equipment, medical supplies and oil/gas pipelines.

Failure Analysis: Stud Image
Failure Analysis: Crack Image
Failure Analysis: Weld Image
We determine how materials and products fail, including mechanical integrity of equipment that has deteriorated due to corrosion, fatigue, damage, abuse, and improper manufacture. See Portfolio to read about our projects. Contact Us to learn more.
  • Recent Projects

  • Root Cause Failure Analysis

    Components not meeting their intended design life, or accidents and failures often result from factors including:
    • Design Errors
    • Material Imperfections
    • Manufacturing Issues
    • Welding Issues
    • Improper Heat Treatments
    • Fatigue / Fracture
    • Misuse or abuse
    • Improper Maintenance
    • Unforeseen Operating Conditions
    • Inadequate Quality Sssurance
    • Environmental Issues (Vibration, Corrosion, etc.)

    Interdisciplinary teams are essential for performing most failure analyses, since the root cause is rarely the result of a single variable. Understanding not only the metallurgical properties but also the environmental effects and stresses to a system or component is important in determining the cause of a material failure.

    Once we identify potential component failure modes, we recommend inspection methods/ intervals, and design solutions to reduce the likelihood of future failures – ensuring structural integrity.

    In elevated temperature applications, complicated failure modes may occur, such as creep ratcheting, rupture, and creep fatigue. Our engineers have the expertise, technology, and experience to identify and quantify these failure modes – helping you understand the root cause and developing solutions to prevent costly recurrences, thus improving safety and lowering operating costs.

    We have assisted clients in various industries – keeping them compliant to engineering codes and standards including:

    • ANSI
    • AISC
    • ASTM
    • AWS
    • API
    • ASME
    • ASCE
    • NBIC
    • AASHTO
    • AAR
    • SAE
    • ISO
    • BS
    • DIN
    • DOE
    • MIL

    Examples Include:

    • Heat Exchangers
    • Bellows
    • Piping
    • Condensors
    • Reactors
    • Manufacturing
    • Petrochemical
    • Mining
    • Oil/ Gas
    • Power Generation
    • Refractory
    • Ductwork
    • Compressors
    • Heaters
    • Welded Assemblies

    Metallurgy/ Testing

    O’Donnell Consulting offers a full spectrum of metallurgical testing to evaluate the root cause of component failure, performing corrosion investigations, surface condition studies, mechanical testing, and weld evaluations. 

    Testing includes:

    • Chemical and Mechanical
    • Metallographic Examination
    • Fractography (SEM and TEM)
    • Accelerated Testing of Failure Modes
    • Material Testing
    • Corrosion Testing

    Our failure analysis experience covers a broad range of industries, materials, and equipment. For a comprehensive list, see Industries Served. 

    Can’t find what you’re looking for? Try our Search Tool above.

    If and when it becomes necessary to present the facts in court, we supply 3-D animations, cutting-edge computer graphics, and multimedia presentations to accompany our expert testimony, clearly demonstrating the issues for Judges and Juries to easily understand.
    To read more, see Expert Witness Services. 


    Give us a call to discuss your engineering challenges.

    Failure Analysis Related Links:

    >> Tom O’Donnell, PE
    >> Materials/Metallurgical Consulting
    >> Weld Troubleshooting/ Consulting
    >> Portfolio of Engineering Projects
    >> Introduction to Fatigue Analysis
    >> Popular Links
    >> Engineering Resources

    Learn from the experience of others. Especially when one such “other” is Dr. William O’Donnell, PhD, PE, Founder and President of O’Donnell Consulting Engineers, Inc., and ASME “Engineer of the Year” – his 50 years of experience in analysis of components including fatigue and fracture safety evaluations and failure analyses are now comprised in this volume.

    If you are interested learning more in Engineering Design, Manufacturing and Construction, as well as Failure Analysis, then this book is a must have!


    * Does not include shipping, handling or tax

    Handbook of Lessons Learned

    (412) 835-5007

    Scroll to Top