Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing

The Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (German: Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung, or BAM) is a German material research institute.

Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing
TypeStandards organization
Legal statusGovernment agency
PurposeChemical and materials safety
HeadquartersUnter den Eichen 87, Steglitz, 12205 Berlin
Region served
Parent organization
Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy


Its historical origins start in 1871, a year in which Germany was unified, as the Mechanisch-Technische Versuchsanstalt. From 1904-19 there was the Königliches Materialprüfungsamt. From 1920-45 there was the Staatliches Materialprüfungsamt (MPA) and from 1919-45 there was the Chemisch-Technische Reichsanstalt (CTR).

In 1954 the Bundesanstalt für mechanische und chemische Materialprüfung was formed, becoming the Bundesanstalt für Materialprüfung in 1956. In 1969 it became a government agency (Bundesoberbehörde). In 1986 the name changed to Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung.


Within the interconnected fields of materials, chemistry, environment and safety, the main areas are:

  • Statutory functions relating to technical safety in the public domain, especially as regards dangerous materials and substances
  • Collaboration in developing statutory regulations, for example on safety standards and threshold values
  • Advising the Federal Government and industry on safety aspects of materials and chemical technology
  • The development and supply of reference materials and methods, in particular for chemical analysis and materials testing
  • Assisting in the development of standards and technical regulations for the evaluation of substances, materials, structures and processes with reference to damage prediction and preservation of national economic values.


It is owned by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology. Its competences are to improve safety in technology and chemistry through research and development, testing, analysis, approvals, advice and information.

The headquarters in Berlin are near the Berlin Botanischer Garten station.


The Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing is subdivided into departments and divisions. The staff sums up to about 1700 members.

  • Analytical chemistry; reference materials
  • Chemical safety engineering
  • Containment systems for dangerous goods
  • Materials and environment
  • Materials engineering
  • Materials protection and surface technologies
  • Safety of structures
  • Non-destructive testing
  • Accreditation, Quality in Testing

See also


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