Simulation advances raise the bar

March 03, 2001

MPA 5.0 combines Moldflow and
C-Mold technologies under a dual domain patent, offering a larger materials database, improved part quality tools, and cost-estimation functions. Pictured top to bottom are examples of the Part Adviser
and Mold Adviser modules. 

With the debut of Moldflow Plastics Advisers (MPA) release 5, users will be able to see the fruits of the Moldflow/C-Mold marriage for the first time. By consolidating technology from C-Mold (which it purchased last year) with its Adviser Series, Moldflow believes it has produced the most substantial version since release 1. For a start, the consolidated materials database available to both Part and Mold Advisers now includes 7485 grades, about a 50 percent increase over MPA 4.0. Other features include better quality assessment and new cost-estimation tools for part and mold designers.

   In the quality department, MPA offers a sink mark locator for the Part and Mold Adviser modules. The locator performs a sink mark analysis based on the results of a filling analysis. It locates areas where sinks occur and estimates their depth. Part designers can use the results to identify potentially critical sink marks and eliminate them through design changes. In cases where changes are not possible, mold designers or process engineers can use results to minimize sink marks by adjusting gate placement, gate size, or packing parameters.

   A corollary feature called cooling quality analysis identifies areas of heat concentration and quantifies the variance in surface temperature and freeze time across the part. Areas in red indicate excessive heat, while green regions show uniform heating. Interactive text-based help allows mold and part designers to drag a mouse over a red area to get information on what could be causing the buildup. This feature aims to help designers minimize regions of excessive heat through either part or cooling design changes for a resulting reduction in cycle times and sink marks.

   New to the MPA series is Cost Adviser. Tied to moldfilling simulation results, this feature estimates part cost in two ways. For Part Adviser users, preliminary part cost is based on material, machine rate, and production volume. In Mold Adviser, part cost is calculated from data on costs of materials, mold manufacturing, machine operation, and postmolding steps.

   Concurrently with the launch of MPA 5.0, Moldflow has added the Knowledge Zone to its Plasticszone website. It contains online design guides, material selection and comparison tools, and information on troubleshooting part defects. In addition, a set of Knowledge Tools features a wizard that guides users through the site, evaluates suitability of a material for a specific application, and performs simple online flow analyses. Currently, the interactive information site is available free to
registered users.

Contact information
Moldflow Corp.
Wayland, MA
Phone: (508) 358-5848
Fax: (508) 358-5868



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