• Water assisted injection moulding: development of insights and predictive capabilities through experiments on instrumented process in parallel with computer simulations.

      Polynkin, A.; Bai, L.; Pittman, J.F.T.; Sienz, J.; Mulvaney-Johnson, Leigh; Brown, Elaine C.; Dawson, A.; Coates, Philip D.; Brookshaw, B.; Vinning, K.; et al. (Maney Publishing, 2008)
      An idealised model of core-out in water assisted injection moulding (WAIM) is set up to isolate the effect of cooling by the water on the deposited layer thickness. Based on simulations, this is investigated for a specific case as a function of Pearson number and power law index. It is found that cooling significantly reduces the layer thickness to the extent that a change in the flow regime ahead of the bubble, from bypass to recirculating flow, is possible. For shear thinning melts with high temperature coefficient of viscosity, the simulations show very low layer thickness, which may indicate unfavourable conditions for WAIM. Although in the real moulding situation, other effects will be superimposed on those found here, the results provide new insights into the fundamentals of WAIM. Investigation of other effects characterised by Fourier and Reynolds numbers will be reported subsequently. Some early process measurement results from an experimental WAIM mould are presented. Reductions in residual wall thickness are observed as the water injection set pressure is increased and the duration of water bubble penetration through the melt is determined experimentally. The formation of voids within the residual wall is noted and observed to reduce in severity with increasing water injection pressure. The presence of such voids can be detected by the signature from an infrared temperatures sensor.