Materials and Structures Official Testing Laboratory


The Official Materials and Structures Testing Laboratory ‘Prof. Giovanni Menditto’ (LPMS), in addition to numerous offices and ancillary rooms, covers an area of 18m x 28m and is equipped with three overhead travelling cranes and a 140cm strongfloor. It specialises in carrying out tests for the mechanical characterisation of materials, using presses and small electro-hydraulic actuators, quasi-static, cyclic and pseudo-dynamic tests on structural components and prototype scale structures, with both vertical and horizontal forcing thanks to large steel frames and a reaction wall, large electro-hydraulic actuators and a vibrodyne. The Laboratory has instruments for conventional in-situ investigations and dynamic identification, both for the definition of the mechanical characteristics of existing buildings (including historic and architecturally valuable buildings) and for operations related to the testing and monitoring of new and existing structures. The Laboratory operates both in the field of teaching (experimental research theses) and in research through collaboration with companies and private individuals.

At the LPMS operates the Centro di Taratura LAT N°160 (ACCREDIA certified), which provides calibration services for “Material Testing Machines”.


Testing of building materials (concrete, metals, composite materials, bricks, mortar, glass)
  • Tests for the material mechanical characterisation (elastic moduli, tensile stresses, shear tests, multi-axial states).
  • Characterisation tests on fracture and damage resistance of materials.
Tests on structural components and structures
  • Dynamic characterisation tests (e.g. dynamic identification).
  • Quasi-static and pseudo-dynamic tests on structural components and full-scale structures (frames, beam-column nodes, etc.).
  • Mechanical characterisation tests (centred load/eccentric load/diagonal compression, shear, bending) of panels of different construction (e.g. standard masonry, brickwork, SIP).
Diagnostics and monitoring of existing structures
  • In situ investigations of conventional, static (load tests) and dynamic type (forced tests using vibrodynes or vibrational tests with ambient noise).
  • Innovative diagnostic techniques and in situ investigations (e.g. identification by means of ‘output only’ techniques).
  • Non-destructive and semi-destructive testing in the civil engineering field.
Calibration of instrumentation
  • Dial gauges and displacement transducers 
  • Pressure gauges and transducers 
  • Load cells
  • Jacks
Calibration of Material Testing Machines – LAT Calibration Centre No. 160


  • Hydraulic system MTS 200 l/min with cooling system
  • Contrast frames and 1000 kN reaction wall at 4m height
  • 50 kN Zwick/Roell machine
  • Universal Zwick/Roell machine with Metrocom frame
  • Metrocom press
  • Hydraulic unit for ENERPAC jacks
  • Series of 10 and 50 kN hydraulic jacks
  • Grinding machine for CLS specimens
  • Pacometer
  • Mechanical rebound hammer + calibration anvil
  • Ultrasonic detector
  • Pull-out test kit
  • Concrete core drilling machine
  • Flat jack test kit
  • Centesimal dial gauges
  • Millesimal deformometer
  • Inclinometer servo-accelerometer
  • Chemical carbonation indicator
  • Dynamic monitoring unit and sensors
  • Speedcam
  • Seismic ICP accelerometers


Prof. Michele Serpilli (head of the laboratory)

Carlo Perticarini (technical contact)

Andrea Conti (technical contact)

Stefano Bufarini (technical contact)