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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Fast Design of Mixing Sections by Means of Network Theory
Single-screw extruders make use of mixing and shearing sections to ensure good thermal and mechanical homogeneity at high mass throughput rates. Nowadays, these sections are usually designed empirically or with very simple estimation formulas. Therefore, important interpretation criteria, like pressure loss, temperature increase, average shear rate or residence time profile are only determined very inaccurately. The 3D finite-element analysis (FEA) can determine these parameters very precisely, but with very long computation times. The network theory allows an economic calculation with a sufficient accuracy of the aforementioned data. This paper describes the modelling of extruder mixing sections and the solution of these models by means of the network theory.
Quality Control of the Discontinuous Compounding Process in a Rubber Internal Mixer by Regression and Neural Networks Process Models
The discontinuous processes in the rubber manufacturing are sensitive to low deviations in the processing method. The main reasons for these deviations are the fluctuations into the process parameters or deviations of the quality of raw materials or the manual operations. The on-line quality prediction of rubber compounds based of the mathematical models for the mixing process in an internal mixer is an important step in direction of quality control. For most applications the models based on regression or neural networks lead to quality predictions of over 90% for various compounds and machine sizes. Such a measure and control unit has been successfully tested at a laboratory mixer.
Optimization of the Wall Thickness Distribution of Pharmaceutical Press-Through Blisters
The wall section of medical press-through blisters may reduce the stability of the packed medicine. A homogeneous wall thickness over the entire capsule chamber enables the manufacturer use a thinner starting foil without a lack of quality, which leads to the saving of raw material and other expenditures. Three thermoforming methods are tested on an industrial form-fill-seal" line. the temperature profile of the raw film before forming the friction coefficient between films and molds or plugs and the biaxial rheological properties of the foil influence the resulting wall thickness distribution."
The Centrifuge - An Alternative to the Filter for Highly Contaminated Polymer Melts
The recycling of thermoplastics gains more and more importance. For removing the contamination one-or-two step filtration units are state of the art, but due to high material loadings or running costs they often reach their limits. Therefore IKV examines whether a centrifuge, which is fed with polymer melt, might be an alternative. In preliminary tests IKV showed that centrifuges built for low-viscosity materials can also be used for polymer melts. A centrifuge was installed into an extrusion line. Up to 10 weight-% of contamination could be removed out of the polymer melt successfully.
Combining Liquid-Silicone-Rubbers with Thermoplastics to Rigid-Flexible Combinations Using 2-Component-Injection-Molding
Since multi component injection molding techniques are well established, the development of rigid-flexible combinations is increasing. Besides combinations between thermoplastics and thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) which are used in various applications, the combination of Liquid-Silicone-Rubbers (LSR) and thermoplastics becomes more important because of their better thermomechanical and mechanical properties in comparison with TPE. Concerning the adhesive strength of these combinations which depends on the properties of the materials, the process parameters in the molding process and the mold-technique there is only insufficient knowledge. To solve this techniques are developed to improve the adhesive strength between the materials.
Process Analysis and Machine Technology for the Injection Molding of Microstructures
In micro injection molding two different tasks can be distinguished: These are the injection molding of small parts (> 1 g) with microstructured details and the direct production of micro parts, i.e. parts with a part weight down to milligrams (mg). Until now there are no suitable injection molding machines available for the production of single micro parts, so injection molders produce big, but precise sprues to achieve the necessary shot weight. To solve this problem, the IKV is developing a micro injection molding machine that meets the molder's demands. First, the injection molding process with differently manufactured micro cavities is analysed.
Gas Assisted Injection Molding of a Vacuum Cleaner Body
Gas-Assisted-Injection-Molding (GAIM) was applied to a vacuum cleaner body made of PP that had a higher shrinkage and a lower strength than ABS. The CAE analysis was carried out to examine the factors in the mold design and processing such as the gas injector location, the gas channel size, the gas pressure level and profile, etc. Although the mold was machined according to the analysis result, actual molding conditions were optimized again with Taguchi method because the CAE analysis could not reflect the complexity of the actual process. The optimized molding conditions agreed well with the result of the CAE analysis.
Study on the Processability of Recycled PET Fiber
Recycled poly(ethylene terephthalate) (R-PET) used in blends with a fiber grade material (F-PET) has been investigated in this paper. As-spun fibers of R-PET, F-PET, and R/F-PET blends were made at winding speeds ranging from 1000 to 4000 m/min (mpm), and subsequently drawn in the range of 5.4 to 1.35X to bear the same total extension ratio. The properties of fibers spun at high and low wind-up speeds with low and high extension ratios have been compared in terms of the orientation, crystallinity, and mechanical properties. The fully oriented yarns (FOY) prepared from R-PET show a tensile strength of 90% of the fiber grade, with 4.4 g/d (R-PET) to 4.8 g/d (F-PET). On the other hand, R-PET fibers spun at low wind-up speed with high extension ratio show better physical properties than that spun at high wind-up speed with low extension ratio, with 4.4 g/d (1000 mpm/5.4X) to 3.7 g/d (4000 mpm/1.35X). The results indicate that for R-PET material, the low wind-up speed with high extension ratio process provided advantageous environment for developing crystalline fiber structures.
Three Dimensional Filling Analysis of the Gas-Assisted Injection Molding
A three-dimensional finite element model combined with a volume tracking technique has been developed to simulate the mold filling phase in gas-assisted injection molding. The model deals with the polymer melt flow having two moving interfaces, i.e., the gas-polymer interface and polymer front. A mixed finite element formulation using four node tetrahedral elements is employed to solve the 3D Navier-Stokes equations. A robust volume tracking technique is developed to track the gas-polymer interface and the polymer front surfaces. When compared to 2D shell models, 3D modeling is capable of predicting accurately the important flow features in complex parts as well as the gas core shapes and locations.
Swelling Interaction, Plasticization, and Antioxidant Extraction between Fiber Optic Cable Gels and Polyolefins
The effects of various waterblocking gels are investigated in relation to swelling behavior of polyolefins. Gel absorption is studied in polyethylene and polypropylene/ethylene copolymers as a function of temperature for a density range of 0.868g/cc to 0.948g/cc for polyethylene and 0.88 to 0.91g/cc for propylene/ethylene copolymers. The effect of swelling on antioxidant extraction is also studied as a function of antioxidant molecular weight and degree of swelling. Both factors show a strong influence on the amount of antioxidant extracted. A direct correlation is found between antioxidant extraction by gels and reduction in thermo-oxidative stability.
Compatibilization of PET/LLDPE Blends with MAH-g-LLDPE
Blends of Polyethylene terephtalate (PET) and Linear Low Density Polyethylene (LLDPE) compatibilized with maleic anhydride-grafted-LLDPE (MAH-g-LLDPE) were characterized. The addition of MAH-g-LLDPE produced a fine dispersed phase morphology and improved processability of blends. A decrease on the crystallization temperature and on the degree of crystallinity of the polyester and an increase on the elastic modulus and on the stress at break were observed. These effects could be attributed to the reduced interfacial tension as a result of the promoted interaction between the polymers by the functionalized polymer.
Prediction of Service Life in a Chemically Active Environment Using Stress-Rupture Data
The effect of chemical exposure on the stress rupture behavior of polyurethane, polyacetal and four acrylic materials was investigated. The polyurethane and polyacetal stress rupture data was used to provide the basis for verification of the expected service life of products made from these materials. The stress rupture data from four different acrylic materials was used to differentiate the materials on the basis of long term strength. The stress rupture data (applied stress vs. failure time) was obtained using a custom designed and built constant tensile load (CTL) testing apparatus.
Continuous Polymerization of Polyetheramide Tri-Block Copolymer in a Modular Intermeshing Counter-Rotating Twin Screw Extruder
Polyetheramide tri-block copolymers have been polymerized in a modular counter-rotating twin screw extruder under a range of processing conditions, including temperature profiles and screw speeds. Polyetheramide tri-block copolymers had not been previously polymerized in a twin screw extruder. Thermal analysis and viscosity measurements clearly demonstrated that the formed copolymers have two separated domains arising from two different block segments. Studies were also made of melt spinning polyetheramide tri-block copolymer into oriented filaments. The formed filaments were characterized using birefringence. The melt spun fibers of polyetheramide tri-block copolymer showed higher elongation than those of polyamide 6 due to the existence of elastomers.
Novel BEM Simulation of Mixing in Polymer Flows Including Non-Linear Effects
When numerically analyzing mixing in polymer processes, there are several difficulties that the engineer will encounter; such as moving boundaries, complex geometries and non-linear material behavior. The Boundary Element Method (BEM), as a technique which requires only boundaries (surfaces) to be meshed, is ideal to simulate problems with moving boundaries and complex geometries. However, the introduction of non-linear material behavior requires domain information. This study applies the Monte Carlo technique to integrate the domain and keep the boundary-only discretization. Results show the influence of non-linear effects, such as shear-thinning viscosity, when characterizing mixing in polymer processing equipment.
Orientation, Stress and Shrinkage Relationships for Amorphous and Semicrystalliane Polymers
The dimensional stability, such as shrinkage strain or stress, of oriented films and sheets is an important factor in the application of these articles. High shrinkage may be desired for some applications or need to be minimized for others. Thus shrinkage control and monitoring is of paramount importance. On the other hand, it is well established for most polymer melts that the birefringence is simply related to the stress through the stress optical rule, and simple theories relate the stress and birefringence to the strain. In this paper, we investigate these relationships for oriented amorphous (polystyrene, PS) and semi-crystalline polymers (PE, PET, and sPS) in relation with their shrinkage stress and/or strain. For low orientations, it is found that the stress and strain can be simply related to birefringence. For semicrystalline polymers, the relationship is more complex. At high degrees of orientation, some modifications to the theories are required.
Miscible Blends of Nylon 6 and TDAI, an Oligomeric Aromatic Nylon, with Improved Melt Flow and Moisture Resistance Properties
A high Tg, aromatic nylon oligomer based on poly (tolyleneisophthalamide) (TDAI) was designed and evaluated as an additive for melt blending with conventional aliphatic nylons (PA 6 and PA66) to achieve miscible blends with improved Tg and property retention upon moisture equilibration. Blending only 10w% of TDAI in GF-PA6 and GF-PA66, a nearly complete retention of modulus and strength could be achieved at 50%RH, validating the general concept of wet Tg enhancement of nylons through miscible Tg-boosting additives. Moisture insensitive oxygen barrier properties could also be obtained in cast PA6 film. The oligomeric nature of TDAI contributes to improved melt flow in PA 6 and permits higher glass loading to give products with moisture-insensitive stiffness and dimensional stability.
Microstructural Effects on the Properties of Injection Molded Nylon 6 Nanocomposites
Nylon 6 nanocomposites consisting of extremely thin, nanometer scale dispersions of platelet type silicates have been prepared and their injection molded properties and morphology have been investigated. The high surface area of such silicate dispersions contribute to a high reinforcement efficiency at low loadings, resulting in high specific modulus, strength and DTUL. However, such ultra-thin platelets cause some unusual structure development during the injection molding. Flow induced orientation of the platelets and an apparent surface nucleation promotes faster crystallization of nylon 6. Higher crystallinity was observed in the nylon 6 nanocomposites, particularly at the surface and in thin-wall moldings compared to the conventional nylon 6. The crystallization, skin-core morphology effects in the injection molded nylon 6 nanocomposites correlate well with the observed mechanical properties, weld-line and surface UV/ weathearing behavior.
Effect of the Addition of a Polycarbonate on the Cure of an Epoxy Thermoset System
During the cure of a thermoset-thermoplastic blend two-phase morphologies may be formed. The phase separation process can be controlled by manipulation of the rate of polymerization of the thermoset system. In this work, the effect of the addition of different amounts of polycarbonate (PC) on the rheokinetics of an epoxy thermoset system is presented. The reactive system used was diglycidyl ether of bisphenol-A cured with 4-4 diaminodiphenylsulfone. The blends of the PC and the epoxy resin were prepared using two different procedures: (a) hot melt blending and (b) dissolution in a common solvent. The kinetics was followed by differential scanning calorimetry and the change in the rheological properties during the curing by dynamic rheometry.
Morphology Development in Carbon Dioxide Assisted Polymer Blending In Batch and Continuous Processes
The compatibility of individual homopolymers is one of the most important parameters influencing polymer blending. Often times blending involves components with vastly different viscosities and interfacial tensions. Supercritical carbon dioxide can be added to polymer melts as a processing aid such that effective polymer blending will occur. A blend system of a high viscosity polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) and low viscosity polystyrene is analyzed in this work. Carbon dioxide has a higher affinity for PMMA than for polystyrene (1). Therefore, a greater plasticizing effect will occur for the PMMA than for the polystyrene. The improved results in polymer blending will be shown in this work. The morphology development of the polymer blends is analyzed in a high-pressure batch mixer and the continuous extrusion process.
Viscoelastic Properties of Multiphase Polymeric Blends
Rheological analysis of multi-phase systems is very difficult because the morphology is strongly related to the flow history. The small amplitude oscillatory shear flow does not affect the morphology and is very useful to predict the viscoelastic behavior of immiscible blends. In this work we study the dynamic rheological properties of Polypropylene based ternary blends with linear low density polyethylene and ethylene/propylene terpolymers of different viscosities taking into account the effects of changing the composition and concentration of the dispersed phase. The predictions of a constitutive equation for emulsions of viscoelastic fluids are also included.
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