expertise in action

Thermal Testing

At HRL we have a range of thermal testing capabilities, from laboratory through to pilot-scale.

We can investigate and develop thermal processes and characterise the thermal behaviour of materials such as coal, char, biomass, waste, and minerals.

Our thermal analysis capability is supported by comprehensive in-house analytical and testing facilities including chemical analysis, physical property measurement (particle size and shape, density, porosity, surface area, pore volume distribution), and mechanical testing. We also have an in-house workshop to construct and modify bench and pilot-scale rigs for specific applications.

How we can help

Specific thermal testing analysis techniques include:

  • TGA-DSC (Thermogravimetric Analysis with Differential Scanning Calorimetry) - investigate weight changes due to thermal events, melting point determination, reaction kinetics, heat capacity determination
  • High Pressure TGA - to investigate pyrolysis, gasification, and combustion behaviour and other gas solid reactions
  • Hot Stage Microscope - to visualise thermal events, e.g. melting or sintering
  • Ash Deposition Investigation - e.g. in boilers and thermal processes
  • Thermal Conductivity - using thermal probe method
  • Dangerous Goods 4.2 Testing - Classification of Self Heating According to UN Standard Method
  • High-temperature materials testing - creep, rupture, tensile strength

We also design, construct, and operate small and pilot scale rigs to investigate and develop thermal processes.  Equipment includes:

  • Physical (steam) activation rig - for activated carbon production from a given feedstock, e.g. biomass or coal
  • 5kg / hr pyrolysis retort - including tar collection, gas clean-up, and gas analysis
  • High-Temperature and Pressure autoclaves - used to investigate processes such as direct liquefaction (coal to liquids), extraction of oil from oil shale, supercritical water extraction, and hydrothermal dewatering
  • Thermal desorption rig - typically used for evaluating treatment of contaminated soils or materials
  • Simulated underground coal gasification (UCG) rig - for evaluation of coals for UCG application
  • Bench-scale fixed bed reactor - for investigating process such as pyrolysis or gasification
  • Laboratory furnaces including sand bath, muffle furnaces (small and large), tube furnaces
  • Multi-hearth dryer (~250kg per hour)
  • Auxiliary equipment such as mills, screens, mixers, conveyors, briquetters, and gas analysis equipment.

Thermal Methods and Equipment

Meet the expert


Sam has over 14 years of experience in energy efficiency, fuel switching and the implementation of cost saving options from the findings of energy efficient audits on large industrial plants. Sam has extensive experience in evaluation of upgrading and utilisation options for gas, biomass and other fuels. His experience includes material/fuel characterization, practical research and demonstration, techno-economic assessments, and detailed feasibility studies.

Read More

What Our Clients Say

"Continuation of work done and excellent past dealings." 

Justin Tan
Read All

See expertise in action:

Ready to transform your business performance?

Contact our technical consultants on -
+61 3 9565 9888
or to get started today.

Our Certifications


NATA accredited AtS/NZS ISO 17025, AS/NZS ISO 17020NATA Accredited Laboratories number 561

ISO 9001 Quality Management

ISO 9001 Quality Management certified by BSI under certificate number FS605116.