The Zwick Roell Group has offered a prize of €10000 value to find the oldest testing machine (regardless of maker) still in regular use.

As an added bonus, all of the participants' names will be entered into a free-prize draw to win an Apple iPad 2.

The competition was launched at Zwick’s ‘Modernisations’ symposium, held at the company’s headquarters in Ulm, Germany.

As manufacturers and designers of materials testing instruments since 1937, the Zwick team would be particularly interested to find a functioning ‘antique’ testing instrument from the early days, although they know this may be unlikely.

The owner of the oldest useable instrument will win a voucher to the value of €10000, to spend on the most up to date Zwick system of their choice. The closing date for entries is 30 June 2012 and prizes will be presented during the 21st testXpo at Zwick's premises in Ulm in October 2012.

Entrants should send a picture of the complete machine, a calibration report or video as proof of serviceability, and a picture of the clearly legible identification plate, directly to Zwick at josef.leyendecker@zwick.de

The history of testing instruments can be traced to the middle of the 18th century when they were first developed in France. By the mid 19th century universal testing instruments were being produced in Germany and the US by companies such as Losenhausen, Mohr & Federhaff, Amsler, Roell+Korthaus and Tinius Olsen.

These were robust, reliable and set the standard for the next 50 years. Since then the field has expanded widely and now materials testing is an essential component of manufacturing, construction and engineering.

For further information visit: www.zwick.com