WSU-NIAR Oil Analysis Lab - Trivector - Infared Spectroscopy - Oil Lab
Oil Analysis Lab

Oil Analysis Lab


The Oil Analysis Lab provides test kits for the following tests. Test kits can be purchased from the online store. The purchase price includes return packaging and shipping.

Trivector Analysis $22
This test method utilizes a Spectro 5200 to collect information about wear, contamination, and general oil chemistry. This test method is a good routine test for the overall condition of the oil, the cleanliness, and can indicate the presence of wear metals that could be coming from failing machine components.

  • Wear Analysis: A ferrous index number represents the amount of magnetic metal particles within the oil. This may represent metals being worn from components (i.e. bearings, cylinders, etc)
  • Contamination: An ISO cleanliness code represents the amount of different size particles found in the oil. Example – 18/16/13 - the first number represents the quantity of particles that are >4 microns, the second number represents the quantity of particles that are >6 microns, and the last number represents the number of particles >14 microns.
  • Chemistry: A dielectric number is representative of the oils general chemistry properties. The value itself is not the primary concern but the change of this value from one test to the next is a good indication of chemical changes occurring in the oil.


Infared Spectroscopy $22
This test method utilizes a Spectro FTIR Alpha Q410 to monitor the molecular substance in the oil. The molecular composition of the oil can then be compared to new oil or trended over time to monitor the levels of water, soot, oxidation, nitration, sulfates, oil additives, fuel, and glycol (antifreeze).

Infrared Spectroscopy determines the molecular make-up of the oil and can determine the levels of key components like; water, oxidation by-products, nitration by-products, sulfation by-products, anti-wear additives, fuel, ethylene glycol (anti-freeze), and the total base number (TBN).


Particle Count/Shape Recognition $22
This test method utilizes a Spectro LNF Q200 to count particles in the oil and categorize the particles by their shapes. The LNF Q200 software compares the shapes of the particles in the oil to an extensive library of particle images in order to categorize the particles appropriately. This test is good for finding how much contamination you have in your oil and helping you to understand what those particles might be. Provides a count of different size particles (ISO cleanliness code) and classifies the shapes of particles into the following categories:

  • Cutting Wear
  • Severe Sliding Wear
  • Fatique Wear
  • Non-Metallic Wear
  • Unclassified Wear


Elemental Analysis $22
This test method utilizes an OSA3 Metallab to identify and quantify the presence of a number of elements found in oil that correlate to contaminants, wear metals, and additives. By comparing the results to new oil or trending the results over time, a number of things can be determined about the oil and any wear metals that may be held within it. This test is a good secondary test to use when a primary test has identified the presence of wear metals in your oil.

Provides quantities (in PPM) of common wear metals, contaminants, and additives in the oil such as: iron, chromium, lead, copper, tin, aluminum, nickel, moly, titanium, manganese, vanadium, silicon, boron, magnesium, calcium, barium, phosphorous, zinc, sodium, and potassium.


Viscosity $22
This test is used to determine the viscosity of your oil. It can be a primary test (used to trend your viscosity) or it can be used as a secondary test to help diagnose other issues.

A change in an oil’s viscosity can be an indication of many things; oxidation of oil, fuel dilution, water contamination, wrong type of oil added, etc.

Oil Chemistry & Contamination Package $44
This test package contains the Trivector Analysis test, Infrared Spectroscopy test, a Viscosity test, and a Water Crackle Test. This group of tests is designed to analyze the condition of the oil by monitoring changes in viscosity, contamination levels, and oil additive levels.

Wear Debris Package $44
This test package contains the Elemental Analysis test and the Particle Count/Shape Recognition test. This group of tests is designed to analyze the condition of the machine by analyzing the amount, shape, size, and type of particle found in the oil. Wear metal concentrations can help to narrow down the possible sources of the metal debris.

Related Links & Downloads

Contact : John Saunders (316) 677-1410

Wichita State University
Compliance Reporting