Engineering design requires large sets of data and statistics to understand how materials will behave under a set of conditions. One of the material properties important to structural and mechanical engineers is the tensile strength of materials. The tensile strength corresponds to the force, or load, that a certain material can take along its axis before failing or yielding. For example if you were to pull on both ends of a string until it snapped, the amount of force needed to break the string would be the tensile failure force (known as normal stress).
To measure the force, we will use a Vernier Dual-Range Force Sensor. This sensor can be accessed though Robolab using Vernierâ€™s Robobook. The Robobook can be found at http://www.vernier.com/nxt/. We will also employ a NXT motor, touch sensor and two gear boxes.