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The injection molding of LSR parts can now be simulated, with software optimizing part/mold design and allowing virtual process troubleshooting that can save development and processing time, as well as in raw material consumption. SIGMA Engineering GmbH's (Aachen, Germany) SIGMASOFT software can be used to troubleshoot problems like air entrapments, to design venting or cold runner systems, and to optimize the thermal design of LSR molds

PlasticsToday Staff

March 27, 2013

2 Min Read
Simulation software opens virtual window onto LSR molding

The injection molding of LSR parts can now be simulated, with software optimizing part/mold design and allowing virtual process troubleshooting that can save development and processing time, as well as in raw material consumption. SIGMA Engineering GmbH's (Aachen, Germany) SIGMASOFT software can be used to troubleshoot problems like air entrapments, to design venting or cold runner systems, and to optimize the thermal design of LSR molds

SIGMASOFT uses a 3D approach that includes the part and mold in the simulation. In addition to a filling analysis, it can predict the curing behavior of the part and runner system. By including the mold information in the simulation, the software allows evaluation of tempering systems, inserts, and the thermal and rheological interaction of the LSR component, gate and mold materials. Process times, including dead time between cycles, are accounted for so that, for instance, temperature loss when the mold stays open, is calculated into the simulation.SIGMA_LSR.tif_.jpg

LSR simulation

LSR molders can virtually identify potential issues, including:

  • Air entrapments

  • Sections where curing starts too early

  • Locations of weld lines

  • Unbalanced filling

Once the first mold layouts are ready, the optimal location of the heating cartridges can be determined. The "multi-cycle analysis" capability captures the thermal effect of several cycles on the mold, so that the part can be analyzed and the optimal processing conditions be found.

A SIGMASOFT representative told PlasticsToday that LSR applications can be calculated with the standard SIGMASOFT Elastomer module, so there is no need for a special LSR module. SIGMA Engineering GmbH was founded in 1998, and since this time, the Elastomer module has been available. "A lot of our customers in the Elastomer Branch are working in elastomer processing and successfully use SIGMASOFT in their daily work," the representative said.

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