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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Gas-Assisted Rubber Injection Molding
Gas-assisted injection molding (GAIM) is not only for thermoplastics, which are limited in their physical properties, an interesting manufacturing technique, but also for rubber. In rubber processing, GAIM is an alternative to conventional manufacturing methods like extrusion. Using GAIM, the manufacture of highly integrated media ducts or hollow sealing systems is possible in one shot, which means a reduction of costs. Due to the different processing characteristics of rubber, the experience gained with GAIM in thermoplastics processing are not directly transferable. In this paper examinations about setting parameters, mold design, required material properties and equipment are presented.
Process Optimization for Reactive Blending and Compatibilization of PA 6 and PET in Extrusion
Blends of PA and PET do not have a minor significance in industrial production any more. Especially since the European beverage industry decided to use (multi- and single layer) PET bottles containing PA, the economic and ecological interest in recycling PA and PET is stringently increasing. In former research projects, where IKV has been involved, the compatibilization of PA and PET in extrusion was simply established. New investigations, focussing on the process optimization, enable to correlate the process parameters with the material properties. Therefore an extruder cascade was developed for a one-step-in-situ compatibilization and in addition a new characteristic parameter was constituted which is independent of the type of extruder.
Predicting the Cooling Conditions at Blown Film Extrusion Lines by Modeling the Cooling Air Stream
In order to develop a process model for the cooling air stream in blown film extrusion, an experimental analysis of the cooling conditions such as air velocity, temperature and pressure, was carried out. Thereby, a fundamental correlation between the cooling conditions and the resulting film temperatures was found and has been transformed into a theoretical description, whereat the air stream is described as a steady-state, two-dimensional, turbulent wall stream. With help of this model, the calculation of the air velocity and pressure along the bubble is possible. As a result, the temperature distribution in the bubble inflation area can be calculated by a dimensionless heat transition law.
Analysis of Internal Structure of Injection-Molded Parts Based on a Three-Dimensional Simulation Software
The computer simulation of the injection molding process is an essential tool to fulfill requirements on technical parts with respect to part quality and efficiency. In addition to melt flow simulation, the calculation of internal properties like crystallization is essential for the prediction of final part properties. After providing the three-dimensional melt flow simulation the calculation of thermally induced crystallization based on a three-dimensional temperature calculation can now be carried out. First results show a good qualitative agreement with experimental studies.
Study on Dynamically Vulcanized PP/EPDM Blends Using Predispersed Additives for Blow Molded & Extruded Products
Thermoplastic vulcanisates (TPV) prepared from rubber -plastic blends by dynamic vulcanization route have gained considerable importance in recent years due to its dual characteristics of elastomers and thermoplastics.1- 4 The present study is aimed at the development of PP/EPDM based TPVs with various elastomer bound chemicals. The elastomer phase of EPDM/PP based TPV were dynamically cured by using different vulcanizing agents alone and with different combinations for e.g. sulfur-accelerator and alkyl-phenol-formaldehyde resin(SP-1045), SP-1045 and predispersed resin(Multisperse XP-1045- 45) . The properties of blends are studied by determining MFI value, tensile strength ,tension set & compression set. Adding SP-1045 resin alongwith predispersed resin (alkyl-phenol-formaldehyde resin in elastomer binder) in PP-EPDM based TPVs showed better tensile properties & lower compression & tension set values. The processability characteristics of all the blends during extrusion is also observed. Among all curatives, best optimum properties together with good processability are observed with a mixed curative system namely resin (SP-1045) and predispersed resin (Multisperse XP-1045-45).
Modified Polypropylene Homopolymer Films for Semi-Retort and High Retort Applications
Monolayer cast polypropylene in combination with PET and Al in multilayer film structures is used for high retort food applications. Similarly, monolayer cast film polypropylene in combination with nylon is used for semi-retort food applications. In the present investigation, work was undertaken by blending Repol® H100EY (MFI: 10gm/10') with ?-olefin copolymers at 20% W/W to study the effect on film processability and final film properties. The films produced for high retort food applications were metallized to study the permeability characteristics Investigation indicates good possibility for the blends in food packaging applications
Studies in Rotational Moulding of Linear Polyethylene Modified with Elastomers and Fillers for Automotive Exteriors
The dream of making an all-plastics" car is fast approaching commercial reality. The Indian automobile industry has leapsfrogged and is able to offer to local and international customers`s fuel-efficient and light-weight cars in designer models. Against the background the small electric car is innovation being explored by some automotive OEMs. As a further innovation development of linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) compounds by rotational moulding technique is being scrutinized. At present vehicle bumpers are conventionally made by injection moulding. But as the initial cost for an injection tool is very high as compared to the rotational moulding tool vehicle manufacturers are looking into the possibility of using Rotational moulding as an alternative process to produce automobile parts. The scope of the present studies was directed towards the optimization of elastomers fillers and flow modifiers during compounding with LLDPE to make a compound suitable for car bumper. The studies were focussed on pulverizing aspects of the LLDPE compound containing elastomers and fillers. The Rotational moulding conditions were optimized for making hollow boxes. The cut specimens from the rotomoulded products were tested for flexural modulus and notched izod impact strength to arrive at the correct recipe."
Effect of Oxidation in Crack Growth Process in Polybutylene Tubing in Potable Water Application
The mechano-chemical processes of degradation and fracture in Polybutylene (PB) tubing in potable water distribution systems have been extensively studied. The fracture is usually initiated in form of microcracks within a layer of degraded PB adjacent to the inner surface of the tubing. Some of those microcracks grow into cracks farther propagating through the pipe wall. Optical and SEM observations reported in the past suggested the presence of continuing chemical degradation in crack propagation stage. In this paper we report the results of micro FT-IR spectroscopy of regions surrounding a partially penetrating as well as breakthrough cracks in PB tubing. The absorption in carbonyl range recorded by the scans perpendicular to the domain surrounding the cracks shows a highly localized presence of carbonyl products along the crack trajectory. It provides a direct evidence of highly localized chemical degradation being a part of fracture process under consideration. The authors previous study of the effect of oxidation on physical and mechanical properties of PB combined with the direct observations of oxidation products presented in this paper serve as a basis for understanding and quantitative modeling of PB degradation and fracture in potable water applications.
Failure Analysis of High Density Polyethylene in Engineering Applications
Comparative failure analysis of extruded HDPE potable water tubing and rotational cast HDPE automotive gas tank has been performed. Both structural elements have comparable wall thickness and similar sandwich type structure of the wall: a brittle core and relatively ductile outer and inner skin. A peculiar mode of brittle fracture related to the variation of material morphology across the wall has been found in both parts. Optical microscopy of fracture site reveals cracks initiated and propagated in the brittle core. Large deformation (necking) and resulting ballooning was found on the outer skin. The observed mechanism of failure is most likely related to material formulation and processing conditions. Application of fundamental principles and procedure of HDPE testing for lifetime are used for interpretation of the premature failure of structural elements in durable applications.
Optimization of PVC Dry Blend Productivity through Double Batching
Attempt has been made to optimize the PVC dry blend productivity by adopting Double Batching". PVC resin was mixed with additional quantities of additives in heater mixer and subsequently remaining PVC resin added in cooler mixer before discharging. Both horizontal and conventional vertical cooler mixers were used and performances compared. The dry blends were tested for rheological properties physical properties and extrudability in the twin screw extruder for rigid PVC pipe manufacturing. Various sizes of the pipes were tested as per standards and compared with the pipes made by normal "Single Batching". The study revealed increased dry blend productivity and cost savings on power and labour when "Double Batching" was adopted."
Developments of Polypropylene (PP) Homopolymer Compounds for Automotive Exteriors
The objective of the present work was to develop compounds from PP homopolymer using a combination of elastomer, glass fibre, filler and other additives to match properties of 15% Wollastonite filled nylon currently in use. The automotive component identified for this material substitution exercise was the front end of a two-wheeler called nose-cone". Blends were prepared by twin-screw melt compounding and later assessed for physical and mechanical properties on standard ASTM test specimens. The results obtained indicate that 15% Wollastonite filled nylon-6 can be easily substituted by low cost PP compounds. PP compounds can also be painted to match those nylon-based materials."
Studies in Polypropylene (PP) / Polybutylene Terephthalate (PBT) Blends for Extruded Products in Refrigerators
Mineral filled PP and blends and alloys of PP with High Impact Polystyrene (HIPS) or Acrylonitrile Butadiene-Styrene (ABS) or Polybutylene Terephthalate (PBT) are acquiring increased importance as innovative materials for sheet extrusion applications. The objective of this work was to develop an alloy of PP for sheet extrusion applications for refrigerator interiors. As a preliminary study, a blend of homopolymer PP, high impact copolymer PP, polyolefin elastomer and fillers together with anhydride modified PP and PBT was prepared by twin-screw compounding. The resultant product was characterized for physical and mechanical properties and these were compared with those of PP homopolymer.
Polyamide-Imide + Montmorillonite Nanocomposites
A Polyamide-imide (PAI) + montmorillonite nanocomposite was investigated. The material has a potential application in magnetic wire enamel coatings. Montmorillonite was introduced into an uncured PAI + aromatic solvent suspension. Curing of the sample was achieved by step-wise heat treatment. Polarized optical microscopy was used to confirm uniform distribution of the montmorillonite in the PAI. Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and x-ray diffraction was used to examine clay dispersion. The results showed that a new nanocomposite was developed having a concentration dependent dispersion throughout the PAI matrix. Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) was used to ascertain the impact of the clay on glass transition (Tg) of the resulting nanocomposite.
Potential Commercial Opportunities for New Inherently Conducting Polymer Compounds in ESD Control Applications
Thermal stability and dispersion have long been the two major limitations to the use of inherently conducting polymers in thermoplastic applications. Recent advances have overcome these problems and allowed the development of novel compounds containing inherently conducting polymers that exhibit useful electrical properties. In particular, the surface resistivity is tunable into the ideal range for electrostatic dissipation protection. Thermoplastic compounds have been developed for injection molding, blow molding, and extrusion in polypropylene, polyethylene, and polystyrene. Potential applications include but are not limited to tote boxes, strapping, carrier tape, blown film, or thermoformed sheet where control of electrostatic discharge is required.
Standard Reference Materials: Non-Newtonian Fluids for Rheological Measurements
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) develops Standard Reference Materials® for calibration, quality assurance and for research into improved measurements. Two fluid standards are being developed to exhibit shear thinning and normal stresses typical of polymeric fluids. SRM 2490 is a solution of polyisobutylene dissolved in 2,6,10,14-tetramethylpenta-decane. SRM 2491 will be a poly(dimethylsiloxane) melt, giving less temperature dependence than SRM 2490. NIST will certify the shear-rate dependence of the viscosity and first normal stress difference at 0 °C, 25 °C and 50 °C, and the linear viscoelastic behavior over the same temperature range. A round robin with the fluids will investigate variability in rheological measurements.
Scaleup of Melt Conveying Parameters in Counter-Rotating Non-Intermeshing Twin Screw Extruders
Extruder screws incorporate restrictive elements as melt seals for heating, mixing, shear and separation of devolatilization zones. To overcome the backpressure caused by the melt seals and convey the melt through the extruder, the screw channels upstream of the seal fill and pump the melt. The screw fill length is an important parameter in determining the residence time and ultimate capacity of the extruder. Experimental data on screw fill length was obtained on counter-rotating, non-intermeshing, CRNI twin screw extruders of different sizes. Model equations similar to single screw models were developed and applied to predict the screw channel drag and pressure flows and the apex leakage flow of the CRNI. Scaleup rules and screw design concepts to give equivalent screw fill and melt conveying performance were determined using the model equations.
An Adjustable Pressure Barrel for Counter-Rotating Non-Intermeshing (CRNI) Twin Screw Extruders
Extrusion processing requires screw modifications during process startup, process optimization and product changes. Downtime and expenses are required to change out the critical screw elements that provide shear, heating and mixing to the product. The CRNI twin screw extruder uses cylindrical compounding elements in the screw design to add shear, heating and mixing to the process. The performance of these cylinders determines the optimum performance of the screw. Varying the cylinder diameter changes the clearance between the barrel wall and changes the shear and the backpressure developed. In order to optimize the screw and make changes in the cylinder/barrel gap while operating, the AP (Adjustable Pressure) barrel was developed. Using the AP barrel can eliminate the down time and expense of changing cylinder elements. Experimental data was obtained comparing the processing characteristics of the AP barrel with varying diameter cylinder compounding elements. Similar performance was obtained using the new AP barrel demonstrating its viability for commercial operations.
The Effect of Residual Impurities on the Rheological and Mechanical Properties of Engineering Polymers Separated from Mixed Plastics
This paper reports the results of an investigation of the effects of purity level and nature of impurities on the properties of recycled polycarbonate and recycled acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene polymers blended with the corresponding virgin resins. The relevant thermal, mechanical and flow properties were measured. It is concluded that properties of recycled polymers depend not only on the amount of impurity present but also on the kind of impurities and contaminants that are present. The latter factor even plays an important part in relation to compatibility of polymers. However, polymer melt rheology seems less sensitive to impurities than some mechanical properties such as impact strength. More than 99% purity is needed for recycling these polymers back into their original, high-value applications.
Numerical Simulation of Co-Injection Molding
In the co-injection molding process, two (or more) different polymers are injected into the cavity simultaneously or sequentially. Different properties of these two polymers and their distribution in the cavity greatly affect the applications of this molding process. The skin layer can use special polymers to provide good appearance and texture, strength, chemical resistance, EMI shielding and other functions. The core layer can use recycled or inexpensive materials. Together these can improve part quality and lower the cost. However, due to the dynamic interaction of two polymers in the manufacturing process and their difference in properties, process control becomes more complicated and process design becomes a challenge. The rules used for the traditional injection molding process design may not always be useful for co-injection molding any more. An integrated CAE software can be used to simulate the co-injection molding process. In this study, the capability and usefulness of the CAE tool will be shown. The control of polymer distribution will be discussed. The effects of polymer properties and their distribution on part quality will also be studied.
Large Part Blow Molding (LPBM) of HDPE Resins: Parison Extrusion Behavior and its Relationship with the Resins’ Rheological Parameters
In order to find the right combination of material properties and processing conditions (blow moldability) for the production of a molded part that has a set of predetermined final properties, it is necessary to characterise the material behaviour under the actual processing conditions. Relating this to the rheological properties (under controlled experimental conditions) of the material, it is possible to design the molecular characteristics of the material in such a way as to attain the desired processing characteristics. This paper presents the results of a study examining the relationships between some basic rheological properties and the key processing material behavior parameters (swell and sag) governing the blow molding process. The technique has been applied to the intermittent extrusion of three HDPE LPBM resins manufactured using three different catalyst and process technologies.
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