Peel Strength and Elongation Testing of Water-Blocking Tape

In this case study, Mecmesin checks the quality of materials from their supplier by testing the tensile strength, elongation, tear and peel adhesion, according to ISO 9073-3.


Ekstel d.o.o. manufactures a range of water-blocking tapes under the branding X-tra tapes®, which have specific applications in the cable industry. These technical textiles are in the form of non-woven fabrics having a single layer or multi-layer laminations, with non-conductive or semi-conductive properties. As part of the ISO 9001-certified quality system, several testing strategies are implemented both on the raw materials and the end-product textile configurations.

The ISO 9073-3 international test standard, ‘Test methods for nonwovens – Determination of tensile strength and elongation‘, is used alongside other adhesion and tear resistance methods. Ekstel wanted to replace their existing ‘dynamometer’ with a tensile force testing system that could provide optimum accuracy and flexibility. It needed to have the versatility to test in accordance with ISO 9073-3, plus other performance-related tests and their own R&D analysis requirements.


Mecmesin supplied a software-controlled tensile tester and a selection of interchangeable loadcells for use with a variety of vice grips. Using a loadcell with a capacity closely matched to the expected peak value optimises the accuracy of the test results. The grips were fitted with wave-form, and rubber jaw faces to ensure appropriate gripping of the fabric, across the whole sample strip width, without damage or risk of slippage.

The EmperorTM software controls the tests to apply a constant rate of extension of 100 mm/min as per ISO 9073. It plots the force-extension graph in real-time and outputs results in customer-formatted reports. The semi-automated test method provides a reliable audit trail, which Ekstel can use to formally document the performance of raw materials from their own suppliers— thereby ensuring the desired quality of input to their own cable protection products. The ability to create a library of different test routines, enables adhesion tests on various laminate construction tapes to all be performed on the same tensile tester.

Combine in-house analysis for R&D with routine QC testing of tensile strength, elongation and peel




We are satisfied with the programs for the measurement of our products and the possibility of exportation and storage of our data into Excel documents.Danila Bavcon, Production manager, Ekstel d. o. o.


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Mecmesin Limited
+44 (0) 1403 799 979

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