Suppose that a metal specimen be placed in tension-compression-testing machine. As the axial load is gradually increased in increments, the total elongation over the gauge length is measured at each increment of the load and this is continued until failure of the specimen takes place. Knowing the original cross-sectional area and length of the specimen, the normal stress σ and the strain ε can be obtained. The graph of these quantities with the stress σ along the y-axis and the strain ε along the x-axis is called the stress-strain diagram. The differs in form for various materials. The diagram shown below is that for a medium-carbon structural steel.