Accelerated weathering using Natural Sunlight Concentrator technology is a great way to combine the benefits of outdoor and laboratory testing. Testing with Q-Lab’s Q-TRAC Solar Concentrators delivers five times the ultraviolet (UV) light of natural outdoor testing, while still using actual sunlight as the light source. In honor of the fivefold increase in UV light the Q-TRAC delivers, here are five great reasons to consider natural sunlight testing with Q-Lab.
- Q-Lab Arizona, where Q-TRAC testing is performed, ranks among the largest desert exposure facilities in the world, delivering high temperatures and abundant sunshine almost every day.
- Q-TRAC testing is surprisingly affordable, starting at only 29 cents per inch of specimen width per day. This can be a very economical way to perform weathering exposures.
- Q-Lab performs all major sunlight concentrator tests in accordance with appropriate test methods, including ASTM G90 and SAE J1961. Standard test cycles including Desert, Freeze/Thaw, and Spray are available, in addition to customized tests.
- Materials tested using the Q-TRAC system are exposed to an average of 5 times more of the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) light than those on a conventional outdoor exposure rack. Does this mean test results are exactly five times as fast? Well, no. But for products primarily affected by photodegradation, testing is likely to be far faster.
- Q-TRAC testing is particularly useful for highly-durable materials with exceptionally long lifetime expectations, like coil coatings, roofing, and more. Natural tests for these materials might take longer to deliver meaningful results than you’re willing to wait.