How is the past tense used

You use this when referring to specific tasks carried out, such as taking measurements, conducting experiments, describing methods actually used, or presenting your results and conclusions from the particular piece of work.

* The past simple passive is mainly used when we report a particular procedure related to only one particular occasion in the past. (See Section 5.4 on Passive Voice)

In Fig.4 the uniaxial curve was calculated using Eq. /51/, the deviatoric stress-strain curve was calculated using Eq./20/, and the hydrostatic stress-strain curve was calculated using Eq./52/._

Experimental results were obtained by the use of surface wave transducers, which were placed on two perpendicularly intersecting faces of a polished aluminium block._

* The past tense is also used in the introduction to give historical background or development in the field of interest:

Technologists and craftspeople of early civilisations built huge objects. Algebra and trigonometry were well understood and applied during those early years. Construction of the pyramids of Egypt and of Central and South America required experience and the labour of many people.

I started my research at the beginning of this term.

* The past tense is commonly used in acknowledgements:

The work, which led to this paper, was sponsored by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. This financial support is greatly appreciated.

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