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Elastomer molding simulation: Improving pressure prediction

Simulation is an established tool to support the design of molds. For elastomer molds, however, the predicted value of the pressure required to fill the cavity sometimes deviates from reality. At DKT/IRC 2015, Sigma Engineering GmbH (Aachen, Germany) will deliver insights on pressure calculations and recommendations on how to interpret the obtained results during a presentation at booth 12-336 at Deutsche Kautshuk-Tagung/International Rubber Conference (DKT/IRC), taking place June 29 through July 2, 2015, in Nuremberg, Germany.

Clare Goldsberry

May 8, 2015

2 Min Read
Elastomer molding simulation: Improving pressure prediction

Simulation is an established tool to support the design of molds. For elastomer molds, however, the predicted value of the pressure required to fill the cavity sometimes deviates from reality. At DKT/IRC 2015, Sigma Engineering GmbH (Aachen, Germany) will deliver insights on pressure calculations and recommendations on how to interpret the obtained results during a presentation at booth 12-336 at Deutsche Kautshuk-Tagung/International Rubber Conference (DKT/IRC), taking place June 29 through July 2, 2015, in Nuremberg, Germany.

Process simulation currently is used to predict material flow in the runner system and cavity; to identify possible problems during production, such as insufficient part curing or possible air traps; and even to make decisions about the tempering system required to maximize process efficiency.

Sigma has made substantial investments in the development of its SigmaSoft simulation software. It is now able to reproduce the complete molding process of elastomeric materials over several production cycles. This technology, commercially available as SigmaSoft Virtual Molding, performs as a virtual injection molding machine, accurately reproducing production conditions and detecting possible quality issues and their root causes early on.

This development has brought noteworthy advantages to the prediction of thermal results, such as curing behavior or cycle time. At the same time, because of the low availability of measured data for rubber material, the pressure prediction often cannot be of the same accuracy.

Following its commitment to continuously improve the quality of simulation results, SIGMA is currently taking part in a work group with industrial partners to understand the source of differences between predicted and measured values. The results that have been obtained thus far will be presented at the DKT/IRC.

The technical contribution, "Pressure Prediction in Elastomer Molds", presented by SigmaSoft Product Manager Timo Gebauer, will explain the different models and ideal boundary conditions used to predict pressure demand, and how the model selected and assumptions made can affect the pressure result.

The results presented will help simulation users to better interpret the measured values and scatter range of the simulated pressure curves. Attendees also will have an overview of the state of development in process simulation, as well as of the challenging questions that drive future developments.

About the Author(s)

Clare Goldsberry

Until she retired in September 2021, Clare Goldsberry reported on the plastics industry for more than 30 years. In addition to the 10,000+ articles she has written, by her own estimation, she is the author of several books, including The Business of Injection Molding: How to succeed as a custom molder and Purchasing Injection Molds: A buyers guide. Goldsberry is a member of the Plastics Pioneers Association. She reflected on her long career in "Time to Say Good-Bye."

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