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Technical Service Center

Materials Engineering and Research Lab (MERL)

5 Million Pound Capacity Testing Machine

Bill Kepler, Manager (WKepler@usbr.gov) 303-445-2386
Building 56, 86-68180
Denver Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225-0007

MERL occupies 3½ acres of Building 56 in the Denver Federal Center, Reclamation's research facility. MERL has the facilities to test concrete, concrete reinforcement, selected metals, plastics, geotextiles, coatings, and other materials. Tests include physical properties, corrosion, durability, enviornmental, and drying and shrinkage. Our testing capabilities include:

  • Large scale structural testing—5 million pound capacity tension and compression
  • Large-scale dynamic testing of concrete and structural systems— 1 million pound capacity compression
  • Structural modeling and testing
  • Uniaxial vibration testing—50,000 pound payload

Explore this site further to learn more about the laboratory, our testing capabilities, our partnerships, our publications, and our research.  MERL conducts research in several areas: