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The SPE Library contains thousands of papers, presentations, journal briefs and recorded webinars from the best minds in the Plastics Industry. Spanning almost two decades, this collection of published research and development work in polymer science and plastics technology is a wealth of knowledge and information for anyone involved in plastics.

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Conference Proceedings
The Effects of Multiple Heat Histories on the Mechanical Properties of High-Impact Polystyrene
Jonathan DeSousa, May 2002
The plastic materials that make up consumer items are most often discarded after use. However, thermoplastics can be subjected to several recycle histories before they are disposed of in a landfill. Many studies have shown that mechanical recycling can cause some level of degradation of polymer properties. However, few studies have looked at the effect of repeated recycle histories on the properties of plastics. In this study, the effects of multiple recycle histories on the mechanical properties of high-impact polystyrene were determined in an attempt to show that plastics can be quite recyclable even after a large number of recycle histories. In this study, the high-impact polystyrene was reprocessed a total of thirty (30) times. Melt flow rate, tensile properties, and impact properties were determined for these multiple recycle histories. In most cases, the change in properties was relatively small, even for the large number or recycle histories studied.
Effects of Oil Temperature Difference on Part Weight
Albert O. Lorya, May 2002
This project investigates the effects of oil temperature variations on the repeatability of the parts, based on part weight. Two different material types were used for this study: Polypropylene & ABS. These two materials were selected to represent the two types of plastics: semi-crystalline (PP) and amorphous (ABS).The study compared the weights of the parts at three different oil temperatures, and the parts were matched by cycle. The study reveals that the lower the oil temperature the heavier the parts. Also the lower the oil temperature the less the part weight variation was with one material. The findings are based on data collected from two machines.
The Effects of Power Ultrasonic Wave on In-Situ Polymerization and Formation of PMMA-Clay Nanocomposites
Joung Gul Ryu, Hyung Soo Kim, Jae Wook Lee, May 2002
Several methods have been used to synthesize polymer-clay nanocomposites. In-situ polymerization with clay belongs to a classical way to develop nano-structured materials, while melt intercalation is being recognized as another useful approach due to its versatility and environmentally benign character.In this research, we prepared polymer-clay nanocomposites based on the poly (methyl methacrylate) and organically modified montmorillonite via two-stage sonication process. According to the unique mode of power ultrasonic wave, the sonication during processing led to enhanced breakup of the clay agglomerates and reduction in size of the dispersed phase. Optimum conditions to form stable exfoliated nanocomposites were studied for various sonication times, sonication ratios, addition of initiator and different kinds of clay.It was found that a novel attempt carried out in this study yielded further improvement in the mechanical performance of the nanocomposites compared to those produced by the conventional melt mixing process, as revealed by DMA, XRD and TEM.
Effects of Processing Conditions on the Hollow Structure of Liquid Gas Assisted Injection-Molded Parts
Dong-Hak Kim, Kwansik Oh, May 2002
Gas-assisted injection molding (GAIM) offers many advantages such as design flexibility, dimensional stability, reduction of machine tonnages, and so on[1]. But, for thick parts such as handles, it is observed the surface defects including hesitation mark and gloss difference.Liquid gas-assisted injection molding (LGAIM) is a good alternative of conventional GAIM especially in manufacturing simple and very thick parts. We developed total system for LGAIM and applied to several parts[2-4].In this paper, we present experimental investigation on the effect of various processing parameters associated with LGAIM process. The processing parameters chosen for this study included shot size, liquid injection time, delay time, and injection molding machine conditions such as injection speed, injection pressure, and so on. From this study, we obtained the useful design guide for LGAIM process.
Effects of Processing Parameters on the Preparation of High Density Polyethylene / Layered Silicate Nanocomposites
Minhan Kwak, Minhee Lee, Bong-Keun Lee, May 2002
Effects of polyethylene-g-maleic anhydride, processing parameters and molecular weight of matrix polymer on the nanocomposite preparation are demonstrated in polyethylene / layered silicate system using a Haake batch mixer. XRD and TEM techniques are utilized for evaluating the degree of exfoliation. The d-spacing value of the layered silicate, Cloisite 6A, linearly increases with the amount of PE-MAH and the layered silicate is successfully exfoliated over 25wt% at a certain processing condition. Effects of major processing parameters, such as temperature, mixing time and mixing speed, on the intercalation or exfoliation behavior are also clarified in this study. In addition, some discussion about the shear stress and the diffusion of polymer is presented to figure out the exfoliation behavior based on phenomenological results observed in this experimental work.
The Effects of Processing Variables on the Weld-Line Strength of Plastics in Aggressive Environments: Part I Materials and Solvent Selection
Stephen Petrie, Mark D. Charbonneau, May 2002
In a lengthy study, three commercial materials {high density polyethylene (HDPE), nylon 6,6 (PA) and polycarbonate (PC)} and three common liquids {a synthetic non-ionic surfactant (Igepal CO-630), an alcohol (ethanol) and an n-alkane (heptane)} were used to investigate the affects of processing variables on weld-line strength in an aggressive medium. An experimental design was used to evaluate each of the processing parameters.There were five mechanical properties studied at the onset of testing, with the intent to examine exclusively the most sensitive. The breaking strength was calculated to have the largest normalized sensitivity.The screening design showed which processing parameters were most important. These significant variables were then investigated further with a factorial design. Processing alone increased the breaking strength by 30 percent.Analysis of the results, from the factorial design, gave mathematical models, which described the effect of the processing parameters on the breaking strengths of the PC and PA. Also no interactions were observed between the significant parameters, however curvature effects were most prevalent.
Effects of Supercritical CO2 on the Dispersed Phase Size and Cocontinuity of PS/LDPE Blends
Anle Xue, Costas Tzoganakis, May 2002
PS/LDPE blends were prepared in a twin-screw extruder over a wide range of composition with the aid of supercritical CO2 (scCO2). The effects of scCO2 on the dispersed phase size and the phase cocontinuity of these blends were studied by scanning electron microscopy and gravimetry after selective extraction. Supercritical CO2 was found to reduce the dispersed phase size and shift the region of cocontinuity. The morphology development along the twin-screw extruder was also studied by taking samples from both the vent and the die. The effects of scCO2 on the morphology were observed at the vent. However, the morphology at the die after CO2 venting was similar to that without CO2. Within the cocontinuous region, very fine morphologies with a special pattern were found during the foaming process with CO2.
The Effects of Weld Geometry and Glass-Fiber Orientation on the Mechanical Performance of Joints Part I: Weld Design Issues
Val A. Kagan, Christopher Roth, May 2002
The mechanical performance of injection molded glass-fiber reinforced [thermo]plastic components is anisotropic and depends on the fiber orientation and distribution. The purpose of this comprehensive analysis is to show the relationship between short-fiber orientation at the pre-welded bead and wall areas, and the mechanical performance of welded butt-joints that have various geometry and thickness, namely straight" and "T-type" welds.Findings on the mechanical performance of these two different types of butt-joints by the design and geometry butt-joints will help designers and technologists with material selection welding processing and design optimization. In a subsequent paper (Part II)1 we related these findings to the kinetics of glass-fiber re-orientation and micro-structural changes and how they influence part and weld design."
Efficiency of Clear-Welding Technology for Polyamides
Val A. Kagan, Nicole M. Woosman, May 2002
Many industrial applications require optically transparent thermoplastic components, and structural joints almost invisible to the human vision. Traditional transmission laser welding of plastics joining is limited by the process conditions when one thermoplastic is optically transparent and the second absorbing laser energy. Advanced Clear-Weld™ (clear-welding)1 laser technology may satisfy these specific requirements in joining various similar and dissimilar optically transparent thermoplastics. These innovative design-joining technology considerations require the following conditions at the interface between the joined surfaces: 1) laser absorbing material; 2) optimized laser energy for heat generation between joined thermoplastics.The analysis of representative test results shows that clear-welding technology is highly efficient also for use with various transparent nylon grades. The tensile strength of the clear-weld butt joint is similar to the results achieved for nylon with other advanced plastics joining methods such as linear, orbital, hot plate and regular infrared (laser through-transmission) technologies. The developed comprehensive recommendations will help designers and technologists with welded parts design, material(s) and process selection and optimization for laser welding applications when the joined thermoplastic part requires optical transparency, as well as flash and particle free conditions.
Electrical Conductivity Changes of Silicone or Polyurethane Rubber/Carbon Black Composites during Cyclic Pressure Deformation
J. Vilcakova, A. Lengalova, P. Saha, O. Quadrat, T. Kitano, May 2002
Elastic composites consisting of a non-conductive matrix and conductive filler change their electrical properties under deformation, which enables them to be used as pressure sensors. For this purpose change in electrical conductivity of carbon black/silicone or polyurethane rubber composites during cyclic pressure deformation has been studied. The findings revealed that the character of conductivity changes depends on the filler concentration. While below the percolation threshold the conductivity decreases with the pressure deformation, above this critical filler content conductivity increases. This behaviour is explained as a result of the different space structure of conducting particles in the composite matrix. Cyclic pressure experiments showed that even a small deformation causes irreversible changes in the composite structure and, consequently, non-reproducibility of the repeated loadings.
Electrical Conductivity of a Graphite Based Composite as Affected by the Degree of Mixedness of Graphite in the Elastomeric Matrix
Dilhan M. Kalyon, Elvan Birinci, May 2002
The development of the electrical properties of composites as a function of the degree of mixedness of graphite distributed into a plasticized thermoplastic elastomer (Kraton with mineral oil plasticizer) is investigated. A wide-angle x-ray diffraction (WAXD) based quantitative phase analysis method was used to characterize the variations of the concentrations of the elastomer and the graphite particles around their mean values as a function of mixing time in an intensive batch mixer. Increasing the specific energy input during the mixing process results in a more homogeneous spatial distribution of graphite in the elastomer. The increasing specific energy input alters the rheology of the composite suggesting that significant structural changes do occur. Indeed the degree of mixedness of the graphite in the matrix is quantitatively determined to be improved, generally resulting in better coating of the individual graphite particles. This improved coating effectiveness in turn results in a decrease of the volume conductivity of the composite.
Energy Absorption and Damage Mechanisms in Rubber Modified Systems Tested in Multi-Axial Stress States
S. Ramaswamy, Alan J. Lesser, May 2002
The toughening mechanisms in three different systems namely, acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS), methacrylate-butadiene-styrene (MBS) modified poly (vinyl chloride) (PVC) and styrene-butadiene-styrene (Kraton D) have been investigated. Samples were tested over a range of biaxial stress states followed by analysis of damage using confocal microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. In a certain range of biaxial stress states, the damage in these systems was in the form of cracks propagating perpendicular to the direction of the maximum applied tensile principal stress. The cracks appear to be arranged in more or less a periodic manner that would result in stress reduction at the crack tips. Similar patterns have also been found to occur in several other polymeric systems. Since materials themselves fashion these patterns, it is speculated that they are energetically favorable.
Enhancing Sales with Strategic Marketing Tools - Avoid Costly Errors and Sell More Products
Martin K. Pottle, May 2002
In today's lean corporate environment, businesses must focus each dollar spent on creating maximum impact and return in the marketplace. Effective allocation of funds, without costly marketing blunders, is essential to the growth of a company. This presentation will expose six of the most commonly held marketing misconceptions, and offer insight into effective marketing. Directed toward sales engineers, engineering managers, general managers and sales and marketing personnel, smart strategic marketing strategies and tactics will be discussed to give you and your company a competitive advantage.
Equations of the State of Polymer Solids and Melts
Agnieszka Habel, Gonzalo Martinez, Witold Brostow, May 2002
Pressure-volume-temperature (PVT) relationships in polymer solids are used in prediction of long-term performance from short-term tests. We use a technique such that the sample is under hydrostatic mercury pressure, so that solid and molten states are studied in one experiment (isothermal varying P stepwise or isobaric varying T stepwise). The results are represented by the Hartmann equation of state in terms of its characteristic parameters T*, P* and v*. The last one can be used to calculate the free volume by a simple subtraction. We shall try to connect the Hartmann parameters of selected polymers not only to mechanical but also to tribological properties.
Establishing a Foaming Agent Material to Aid in the Development in a New Expandable Cast
Amanda R. Lecker, John M. Avolio, May 2002
There is a need for a size compensating bone cast. When an injury occurs, and a bone is broken, the area around the injury swells. A cast is applied to the arm to prohibit movement. Over time, as swelling decreases, another cast must be sculpted to the reduced size of the arm. Through research of material properties and characteristics, a foaming material has been found that will aid in creating a one-time application cast. Some advantages of this material are: flexibility, expandability, and the ability to create pressure points, however, cost efficiency, safety, and ability to hold a constant pressure must be determined. This research charts the development of such a product.
Establishment of Valve Gate System for Sequential Injection Molding
Shia-Chung Chen, Ming-Shiu Chung, Hsin-Shu Peng, Lei-Ti Huang, May 2002
Sequential injection molding using valve-gate controlled hot runner system has attracted attentions for industrial applications in recent years. Due to the complication in operation mechanisms, commercial valve gate usually delays for about 0.3 to 0.5 seconds once the valve-opening command is given. This signal to operation delay is acceptable for conventional injection molding of large parts. However, it becomes critical for 3C thin-wall molding application where the required filling time is short. In this study, a gas-driven valve gate control system was established. Valve-gate opening monitoring system using both CCD camera and cavity pressure transducers was also constructed. All design parameters including gas-valve response characteristics, tolerance between inner piston and cylinder, gas pressure, melt temperature, etc., that would affect valve-gate opening were investigated. The delay time for vale-gate shaft movement in a non-melt environment can be reduced to about 50 mini-seconds whereas it increases to about 80 mini-seconds in a melt-filled environment.
Ethylene Polymerization with Cp2ZrCl2 Supported Catalyst
Rodrigo A. Silva, Carla C. Pombo, Anunciata Conte, Maria de Fátima V. Marques, May 2002
In this work metallocene polyethylene was obtained through catalysts comprising of Cp2ZrCl2 supported on silica/methylaluminoxane (MAO) prepared with different methods. The metallocene complex was directly immobilized on the support surface or on the support pretreated with MAO. The results showed that, at the supported catalyst preparation conditions employed in this work, the pretreatment with MAO did not enhance the activity for ethylene polymerization. Moreover the average molecular weight of the polyethylene obtained with the supported catalysts were higher than those obtained with the homogeneous precursor. Morphological control of polymer particle produced with the supported systems was also observed.
Ethylene-Propylene Copolymers Synthetized by Cp2ZrCl2/MAO Homogeneous Catalyst System
Anunciata Conte, Maria de Fátima V. Marques, May 2002
Biscyclopentadienyl zirconium dichloride and methylaluminoxane (MAO) complex catalytic solution was used in ethylene-propylene (E-P) copolymerization. Reaction temperature and time were varied in order to find the relationship among the polymerization activities, average molecular weight (Mw), polydispersity (MWD) and thermal behavior of the copolymers. The parameters evaluated influenced on the catalytic performance in such a way that E-P copolymers with different polydispersities are obtained just by changing the concentration of the comonomers dissolved in the reaction medium. Also, it was observed that, in the range studied, the increase of the reaction temperature contributed to the decrease in the catalytic activity.
An Evaluation of Heat Management in Injection Mould Tools
P.S. Allan, B.A. McCalla, Y. Mubarak, D. Mulligan, May 2002
The control and management of heat in the mould tool is vital for obtaining the optimum production processing conditions in injection moulding. Work at the Wolfson Centre, Brunel University is evaluating the conventional mould cooling methods and also a technique called Pulse Cooling Technology". A special instrumented mould tool was designed for the project and this will be described in the text. The tool has a number of features that represent some common moulding features and it also has pieces that can be subjected to standard mechanical testing procedures. Data from the moulding runs will be compared with high-pressure thermal conductivity and pVT measurements. Finally a comparison will be made between the two mould cooling methods."
Evaluation of Poly (ester-ether) Block Copolymers for Use in Automotive Fluid Handling Applications
F. Gribben, G.M. McNally, W.R. Murphy, T. McNally, May 2002
Block copolymers based on Poly (ester-ether) block structure were in part tested to SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) J2027 as to their suitability for use in automotive fluid handling applications. Six block copolymers of varying microstructure (that is hard-soft segment ratio) were injection moulded into ASTM test specimens and immersed in five standard automotive test fluids; Aggressive Water, Fuel C, Transmission Oil, Ethylene Glycol, and Zinc Chloride solution. Deterioration in tensile strength, tensile and flexural modulus of up to 15% for the block copolymers was observed after immersion in all test fluids except Fuel C where the reduction in mechanical properties was as high as 50% when compared to the neat dry polymers. Similar but less dramatic behaviour was also seen for the elongation at break measurements. The loss in impact strength on immersion in the test fluids was small, the greatest loss was seen for the softer grades of block copolymer. The degradation of mechanical properties is correlated with the ratios of hard to soft segments in the block copolymers studied.

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