The Vernier Structures & Materials Tester (VSMT) is the perfect device for all project-based STEM and engineering classrooms. Use the Tester, along with the engineering design method, to design, build, and test structures, conduct bridge competitions, and investigate and analyze beam designs and material properties.
Exact Force and Displacement for Bends and Breaks
The Tester is equipped with a load cell (measuring up to 1000 N) and a displacement sensor (0.1 mm resolution). Using both sensors allows you to record maximum breaking loads, as well as load/displacement characteristics to allow students to evaluate stress and strain.
Use Logger Pro video analysis in conjunction with your sensor measurements to see how and when things bend and break.
Accurate Positioning for Center and Off-Center Loading
The top support beams of the Tester are designed to easily slide and lock into position. Ruled markings located on the Tester allow you to accurately position the support beams for center or off-center loading.
Easy Loading For Different Sizes and Shapes
The VSMT ships with a well-outfitted VSMT Tackle Kit that includes a 50 x 50 x 6 mm and a 50 x 80 x 6 mm aluminum load plate, chain, rods, U-bolts, and other accessories to make it quick and easy to load bridges, materials, beams, and structures of varying sizes and shapes.
Truss Tester Accessory (Sold Separately)
Bridge building contests are an excellent platform for teaching engineering principles. A single bridge, however, can take a lot of time and material to complete. The Truss Tester Accessory allows students to focus on the design of a single truss, so the opportunity to learn from their efforts and engage in the engineering design process is emphasized, without spending an extraordinary amount of time building several bridges.
Learn more about the Truss Tester Accessory »
Vernier Structures & Materials Tester
- Dimensions: 45 cm x 50 cm x 20 cm
- Weight: 22.15 lbs
- Operational Range: 0 to 1,000 N
- Safety Range (maximum force without damage done to sensor): 0 to 1,300 N
- Resolution: 1 N
Download the user manual for full specifications
- Range: 0 to 7 cm
- Resolution: 0.01 cm
Beam Inquiry Activities
Students can explore properties of materials and beam construction. These experiments are designed around the deflection of a beam supported on both ends and loaded by a downward force at its center.
Preview and/or edit the experiments for your curriculum by downloading the experiments below. The Student download includes objectives, materials, procedures, and analysis. The Instructor download includes notes, sample results and graphs, and answers.
Lab Ideas and Innovative Uses
Do you have an innovative use for Vernier technology? What about a favorite lab or demo? We love to hear what creative uses people have for our products. Please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org
Logger Pro Experiment Files
Logger Pro software contains experiment files that facilitate experiments and investigations for most of our sensors and probes. Here is a brief summary of the files created for the VSMT. You can find these files by clicking on File > Open > Probes & Sensors > Structures & Materials Tester in Logger Pro.
The VSMT is an ideal tool to use for class bridge and structure engineering and design competitions. Students can test their bridges or other structures to determine the maximum force or efficiency (force/weight of bridge).
This activity is designed to allow the student to test a single unit and evaluate its performance and failure mechanism. Combine this activity with Logger Pro‘s Video Capture to analyze the point of failure, develop explanations, and re-design the structure to improve performance. This activity is at the heart of the engineering design process.
We have developed 3 experiment files for the evaluation and study of beams:
- Rectangular Beam Inquiry
- Moment of Inertia Inquiry
- Elastic Modulus Rectangular Beam
Students can explore properties of materials and beam construction. These experiment files are designed around the deflection of a beam supported on both ends and loaded by a downward force at its center.
The Vernier Structures & Materials Tester may require a compatible interface and software. Choose a platform below to see compatible interface and software options.
The Vernier Structures & Materials Tester is fully supported with LabQuest 2 (version 2.7.2), a standalone data logger with built-in graphing and analysis software.
Learn more about LabQuest 2 »
You can also use the Vernier Structures & Materials Tester with these platforms:
- All prices are for U.S. educators.
- The Vernier Structures & Materials Tester includes one VSMT Tackle Kit.
Educational use only: Vernier products are designed for educational use. They are not appropriate for industrial, medical, or commercial applications. Product usage disclaimer »