SPE Library

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

Flow Charactristics of Rubber-Toughened Glass-Fiber Reinforced Nylon 66
Fares D. Alsewailem, Rakesh K. Gupta, May 2006

This research deals with studying the effect of incorporating thermoplastic rubbers on the flow properties of virgin and Post-Industrial glass-fiber-reinforced nylon 66. Rubbers used in this study were Styrene-Ethylene- Butylene-Styrene and Ethylene-Propylene grafted with maleic anhydride. Flow properties of the composites were examined by the melt flow index and rotational viscometry. The melt flow index (MFI) data showed a drastic reduction in MFI when both rubbers were added to recycled and virgin glass-fiber-reinforced nylon 66. The highest reduction in MFI, which implies an increase in viscosity and molecular weight of the composites, was observed at higher rubber content. The measurements of the dynamic viscosity vs. shear rate showed an increase in viscosity with increasing rubber content at both glass fiber contents. The zero shear viscosity of the composites was found to generally deviate positively from the log additive rule.

Structural Development in Solution Casting Optical Polycarbonate Film
Jaehyun Kim, Whanki Kim, Doowhan Kang, Ohyoung Kim, Ho Jong Kang, Joonhee Han, Sungdo Kim, May 2006

Optical polycarbonate (PC) film has been prepared by the solution casting film process using 1,3- dioxolane. The crystallization behavior of PC during the solidification process with removing 1,3-dioxolane was investigated to avoid the development of crystalline structure in optical PC film. The evaporation rate of PC/1,3-dioxolane solution affected the level of crystallinity in obtained PC film. It was found that the slow evaporation caused the forming of crystalline structure since it allows PC chain to have an enough time to crystallize. It was noticed from this study that PC undergoes solvent-induced crystallization by the solvent evaporation as well as by the absorption of organic solvent.

Model Laws and Scale-Up Rules for the Design of Extrusion Slit Dies
Helmut Potente, Hans-Peter Heim, Ralf Schlottmann, May 2006

The design of extrusion slit dies is frequently based on knowledge and experience of the designers and toolmakers. One very simple, rapid and low-cost means of designing a slit die is the use of model laws and scaleup rules based on the similarity theory. This paper deals with an approach to develop scale-up rules which make it possible to scale-up or scale-down an existing die by means of simple equations, developed from the similarity theory. The cases observed are those of a constant gap height with a variable gap width and a variable gap width with a constant gap height. Allowance is also made for a change in material properties in order to achieve the greatest possible variability in the slit die design. Scaleup rules are compiled for die geometries and material properties described and derived by means of model laws and similarity theory. The scale-up rules are examined in practical experiments and in simulation calculations.

Numerical and Experimental Study of Dispersive Mixing Of Agglomerates
V. Collin, E. Peuvrel-Disdier, B. Alsteens, V. Legat, T. Avalosse, S. Otto, H.M. Metwally, May 2006

The degree of filler dispersion has a major influence on the physical properties of rubber compounds. Typical fillers, e.g. carbon black and silica, are difficult to disperse, particularly if they are fine and low structured. As a result, the quantity of undispersed fillers generally amounts for 1% to 10% of the compound. The elimination, or at least the reduction, of agglomerates will result in rubber parts (e.g. tires, seals, belts) with improved properties and higher reliability. Clearly, a better understanding of the physics of batch mixers would help improve their mixing performance. Due to the complexity of the real process, experiments on a representative device were held from which a model has been deduced. It appears to be a generalization of the law of Kao and Mason, but for high viscous matrices. The next step was to get a model available for statistically large number of pellets as can be found in any sample taken out of the mixer. A statistical approach is used where we define a model describing the evolution of mass density function of agglomerate sizes. Eventually, we implement this model within available numerical simulation tools to estimate dispersion in real mixers.

Experimental Investigations on the Plasticating Process in a Short Single Screw Extruder for Biopolymers
Helmut Potente, Hans-Peter Heim, Sebastian Kleineheismann, Wolfgang Ernst, May 2006

Compared to conventional single screw extruders, the ultra-short extruder has a completely different design. Therefore, the melting mechanism is also completely different. Experimental investigations in case of processing biopolymers like starch have shown first insight in the relations between process parameters, the place of melting and the energy conversion related to the melting process. Because the ultra-short extruder has no heating system, the plasticating process is only based on the conversion from drive power to friction. The variation of screw speed, feed rate and die resistance showed that mostly the screw is partly filled. This has an influence on the energy conversion and on melt temperature. Based on this knowledge, physical relationships between the parameters have been formulated in order to allow a further mathematical modelling.

Successful Defense Against Infringement
Elliott L.Weinberg, May 2006

This personal narrative about involvement in a multimillion dollar patent infringement suit excites me even to this day. It actually involved work that I did in the1950s. The lawsuit took place in the 80s and involved over a year and half of preparation prior to trial in New Orleans. The infringement claim was based on an issued patent that involved a variation of a basic patent of mine which had been declared prior validity during a very active research era in which I introduced organotin/sulfur stabilization for polyvinyl chloride. At deposition time, the opposing attorney insisted that this case would not be settled out of court. At trial, the opposing attorney made a fool of himself and the case was decided in our favor. Because of continuing litigation elsewhere, the trial record was sealed and I was not allowed to testify in any similar case.

Rapid Cooling Crystallization in Thin Films of Linear Polyethylene
Rahul Patki, Paul J. Phillips, May 2006

A rapid cooling technique has enabled us to study crystallization at very large supercoolings in the past, and is now well established for routine experiments on thin films. The results obtained for a series of polyethylenes, polypropylene, nylons and PET using the technique have enhanced current knowledge of the crystallization behavior of such materials at very high cooling rates. All the previous studies were carried out using thin films, 40 ?m or higher in thickness, and with embedded thermocouples. In the current study we will report the effects resulting from using films lower in thickness (~10?m) on the growth rate and morphology of linear polyethylene

Novel Metallocene Catalyst Phillips Loop-Slurry Based Polyethylene Resins for Extrusion Coating Applications
Ashish M. Sukhadia, Gary D. Jerdee, Kelly R. Frey, Michael D. Jensen, Max P. McDaniel, Youlu Yu, May 2006

Significant advances in our abilities to synthesize novel polyethylene resins for extrusion coating applications are discussed. The new resins were largely equivalent to a conventional HP-LDPE resin in impact, tear, adhesion, sealing, extruder motor loads and pressures at comparable melt index values. Some resins closely approached the neck-in and drawdown of the HP-LDPE resin. These results are discussed in terms of the molecular and rheological properties of these novel resins compared to conventional HP-LDPE resins.

Observations and Insights into Some Unusual Rheological Behavior of Metallocene Catalyst Polyethylene Resins
Ashish M. Sukhadia, Youlu Yu, David C. Rohlfing, G.L. Hawley, May 2006

The dynamic shear rheological behavior of polyethylene resins made using a single metallocene catalyst was measured and analyzed. We observed some unusual rheological behavior that, at first glance, was more reminiscent of the well-known behavior of highly filled systems. Specifically, the viscosity exhibited yield stresslike character with a sharp upturn in the low-frequency viscosity. The standard molecular weight distribution profile for these resins was generally unremarkable. The causes of this viscosity behavior were explored by further characterization of the molecular architecture and attributed to the presence of long chain branching selectively present in the highest molecular weight fractions of the polymers.

Torque and Speed Fluctuation on Polymer Processing Large Volume Kneader
Daniel U. Witte, May 2006

Large volume kneaders are designed to handle highly viscous polymer processing. The unitary operations can be compounding, polymerizations, devolatilization or drying. Depending on the polymer viscosity in the kneader, the interaction of kneading elements induce a torque and force evolution on the shaft over one revolution. Since the torque load depends on the polymer amount and viscosity over the machine length, information about process data, shaft transport and helix angle have to be considered while superimposing the individual load distribution of shaft segments. Torque fluctuations lead to hydraulic drive system pressure fluctuations, which can lead to shaft speed fluctuations due to the hydraulic oil compressibility. The shaft inertia may amplify torque fluctuations on the drive shaft connection. These fluctuations were measured on lab and industrial scale kneaders. A three-dimensional model is presented, which allows accurate assessment of the mechanical design of the shaft and other kneader components.

Low Temperature Impact Modifier for Clear Polypropylene Applications
Huan Yang, Dave Hansen, Jeff Southwick, May 2006

A styrene-ethylene/butylene-styrene (SEBS) block copolymer with enhanced rubber segment is used to modify homo polypropylene and random copolypropylene. The impact property of blends is analyzed based on the instrumented impact test, and the optical property is measured by haze and transmission tests. The results show that both impact strength and optical properties of blends are improved even with low addition of the unique SEBS. Another novel SEBS is also used to further improve the low temperature impact strength of random co-polypropylene without sacrificing the clarity. The findings can be applied in many packaging applications where both clarity and impact strength are desired. The mechanical, rheological and thermal properties of blends are investigated by flexural test, capillary rheometer and DSC respectively. Those results provide important guidance for optimizing the formulation.

Injection Molding Aliphatic TPU for Brighter Color Applications
Mahmoud Ghanem, Armando Sardanopoli, May 2006

TPU or Thermoplastics Polyurethane is divided into two families, aromatic and aliphatic TPU. Our focus in this paper is Aliphatic TPU. The demands on elastomeric plastics, particularly those destined for application where appearance is key are growing rapidly. Aromatic TPUs tend to turn yellow when exposed to sunlight or heat; this has prevented TPU from being used in automotive interiors applications or where brighter color retention TPU is needed.In this work, Elastollan® LP9273 (ester type aliphatic TPU) is compared to Elastollan C85A (ester type aromatic TPU) and Elastollan 1185A (ether type aromatic TPU). Various testing methods were applied to characterize mechanical and thermal properties; yellowness index, heat aging, QUV and weathering properties are discussed. Four different colors were examined (White, Tan, Grey and Blue). We found that Elastollan® LP9273 showed superior color retention when it compared to the other two materials.

The Effect of Polymeric Excipient Selection and Process Variables on Solid Drug Dosage Forms Using Hot Melt Extrusion
Karen Coppens, Mark Hall, Pam Larsen, Uma Shrestha, Michael Read, May 2006

The selection of the polymeric excipient to be used in HME (hot melt extrusion) is a very important consideration. Excipients must be chosen such that the formulation can be processed at conditions where the components are not degraded. Further, excipient choice is expected to have a direct impact on the dissolution profile and API morphology obtained. Processing variables (e.g. extrusion temperature, equipment configuration, etc.) can also have a significant impact on the characteristics of the extruded material. The formulations used for this study included various grades of ethylcellulose, hypromellose, and polyethylene oxide with model drugs. The focus of this presentation will be on the impact excipient selection and processing variables have on dissolution profiles, API (active pharmaceutical ingredient) morphology, and formulation stability. Data will be presented that demonstrates varied dissolution profiles, as well as the successful generation of solid dispersions that survive 6 month accelerated stability testing.

Material Designation Code for High Performance Polyethylene Piping Materials
White G. Jee, Steve D. Sandstrum, Kevin J. Kipina, May 2006

As the North American piping industry became familiar with both ASTM and ISO standards and test methods, the need to create a new material designation code for high performance polyethylene piping materials also became evident. Over the last few years, much effort has been expended to reach industry consensus on developing a new material designation code. This paper informs the reader of the actions taken in the standards development process to create a new material designation code for these materials. Also this paper addresses the performance properties of PE 4710 materials and actions taken to-date in incorporating the new material designation code in application standards.

Structure Development of Various Polyolefins in Injection Molding
Jaein Suh, James L. White, May 2006

There have been no systematic comparison studies of structures in injection moldings of the various commercial polyolefins.We have investigated crystallization and orientation development in injection molding of various polyolefins, which include high density polyethylene (HDPE), isotactic polypropylene (i-PP), isotactic polybutene-1 (i-PB1) and isotactic poly(4-methyl pentene-1) (i-P4MP1). We used both volumetric injection speed and injection pressure control as the main processing parameters with varying packing pressure and thermal condition based on injection melt and mold temperatures, similarly related to the crystalline melting points.The effort to take into account of these variations on structure development was combined with considerations of crystallization kinetics and rheological properties of raw materials.

Filament-Like Polyaniline-Polypropylene Based Electro-Conductive Composites
Ricardo H. Cruz-Estrada, Carlos V. Cupul-Manzano, Luis M. Rangel-Rodríguez, Alejandra Caballero-Can, May 2006

The effect caused by adding a polyaniline (PANI) complex (PANICX) on the electrical conductivity and microstructure of (PANICX)-polypropylene (PP) filamentlike composites with contents ranging from 1 to 50 wt.% of PANICX was studied. The composites were produced following an in-situ deformation process using a laboratory single-screw extruder and a capillary die. The microstructure was analysed using optical and scanning electron microscopy techniques. The conductivity was calculated using a Keithley electrometer. The variation of the composites conductivity with respect to PANICX content was observed to be characteristic of a percolating system. The electro-conducting phase was deformed into elongated structures embedded in the bulk of the PP and preferentially oriented in the extrusion direction.

Micro and Nano Scale Solid-State PEI Foams
Pavee Chatchaisucha, Vipin Kumar, May 2006

Polyetherimide by General Electric ( ULTEM 1000) was foamed by the solid-state process using CO2 in the subcritical range. At 5 MPa approximately 10 % CO2 by weight is dissolved in PEI. The rate of diffusion in 1.5 mm thick specimens changed when the gas pressure was lowered to 1 MPa , indicating that in this range of pressures the diffusion rate is dependent of gas concentration. Microcellular structures in PEI were obtained, with density reductions up to 45%. Nano-cellular foams, with cells in the 50-100 nm range, and with cell densities exceeding 1014 cells/cm3 were produced at 5 MPa gas saturation.

Bulk Polymerization of Methyl Methacrylate in a Kneader Reactor
P.-A. Fleury, May 2006

The bulk free radical polymerization of methyl methacrylate (MMA) or the bulk free radical copolymerization of MMA based monomer recipes face a gel effect (Trommsdorff’s effect) and exothermicity. The kneader reactor offers a perfect combination of surface renewal and evaporative cooling to control temperature at high conversion (85 to 95%).This type of reactor can be tested batch-wise to optimize the recipe, such as concentrations of initiator and of chain transfer agent. A simulation program was correlated to experimental batch data to determine the optimum concentrations of initiator and of chain transfer agent to target a given molecular weight.

Iso-Strain Force-Temperature Test (IFTT) - Probing Transitions and Stress and Thermal History in Polymeric Materials
YuanQiao Rao, R.J. Farris, May 2006

A new thermal-mechanical test method, Isostrain Force-Temperature Test (IFTT) is proposed in this paper to study the thermal behavior of polymeric materials. This method was utilized to investigate thermal properties of different forms of polymeric materials with inherent anisotropy, such as fibers and films. A variety of polymeric materials were examined. The examined materials include fibers of Kevlar®, and Spectra®, and films of Teflon®, bisphenol A PC and PET. This study provides important thermal properties of the studied materials including sub-Tg transitions or relaxations, glass transition, melting, and the stress and thermal history they experienced. Some information, which is difficult to probe using other thermal characterization methods, was disclosed for the first time.

Clay-Gelatin Nanocomposites of Improved Properties
YuanQiao Rao, May 2006

Transparent clay-gelatin nanocomposite films were made through solution processing. These films exhibit enhanced physical performance. The Young’s modulus of the composite film was 8.3 GPa, almost 3 times that of gelatin alone, by dispersing only 10 wt% of one type of montmorillonite clay into the nano-sized phase in the gelatin. With the addition of the clay nanoparticles, the melting point of the gelatin increases and the crystallinity decreases.The property enhancements of gelatin are affected by the dispersion of particles (i.e., intercalation and exfoliation), particle properties (i.e., particle aspect ratio), and particle alignment, as studied by XRD and TEM.

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