Milacron’s DME partners with Linear AMS to develop 3D-printed conformal cooling technology

Milacron (Cincinnati, OH) announced that its DME product brand, a supplier of mold components, molding supplies and industrial supplies, has partnered with Linear AMS (Livonia, MI) to offer metal 3D-printed conformal cooling products to help improve productivity in the molding industry.

TruCool is the new DME line of products designed to help moldmakers and molders with mold cooling. DME’s conformal cooling products use a direct metal laser melting 3D-printing process to produce complex cavities, cores and components with conformal cooling channels. The process achieves shapes, paths and channel geometries impossible to obtain with conventional tooling.

“We build the unmachineable,” said David Baucus, DME Product Manager. “The conformal cooling solution places cooling channels at the optimal distance from the mold surface, consistently following the geometric shape of any mold insert for any customer part, allowing the mold to maintain a targeted, consistent temperature that allows for complete thermal control with cooling times reduced up to 100%. This technology also allows for conformal venting for those hard-to-reach areas of trapped gases, when requested by the molder.”

Milacron DME's TruCool
Comparison of heat-transfer performance between TruCool 3D-printed conformal cooling and conventional technologies.

DME’s TruCool starts with a detailed review of the moldmaker’s or molder’s requirements; with the use of advanced 3D CAD modeling and FEA software, the DME technology team can simulate lifelike and optimized cooling channels. The resulting channels provide greater overall coverage, even distribution of cooling and the ability to provide individual insert temperature control.

Milacron is one of many company's in the plastics supply chain that will exhibit at UBM’s newest design and manufacturing trade show and conference, which debuts in Cleveland, OH, on March 29 and 30, 2017. On one show floor, Advanced Design & Manufacturing (ADM) Cleveland showcases five zones—packaging, automation and robotics, design and manufacturing, plastics and medical manufacturing. Numerous conference sessions are targeted to the medical manufacturing, automotive and other key industry sectors. Go to the ADM Cleveland  website to learn more and to register to attend.

The moldmaker receives the conformal cooling (and/or venting) optimized mold cavity or core according to the specification of the 3D model with a hardness up to 56 HRC; an additional 0.025-in. rough metal allows finishing of the cavity's or core’s part surface to user specifications. Every conformal cooling solution is material, flow and pressure tested to ensure quality.

With DME’s TruCool technology, molders will benefit from significant cycle-time reductions, complete and isolated thermal control, significant quality improvements, less scrap, increased flexibility in water-line designs and the ability visualize flow capabilities and thermal properties.

“Conventional mold cooling has remained largely unchanged for decades. DME’s partnership with Linear AMS is a huge step forward for the industry,” said Peter Smith, DME President. “Our real-world, in-field results show a significantly reduced total cycle time—between 15 and 60%, depending on part complexity—shortening the time needed to run the part and improving part quality. Likewise, OEMs and product designers will benefit from the technology, as it broadens the scope of part design, allowing for advancements in plastic part production and application use.”

An early adopter of metal 3D additive manufacturing, Linear AMS has

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