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Virtual production of challenging molded products

News 10.05.2016

Between April 26th and 27th the conference Kunststoffe + Simulation 2016 took place. SIGMA Engineering GmbH partnered with Momentive Performance Materials and CVA Silicone to explain the virtual and real production of the design article Ursula. SIGMASOFT® Virtual Molding helped to understand problems in the material selection process and to make sound decisions for the part production. 

Figure 1

SIGMASOFT® Virtual Molding accurately predicts the flowability and curing kinetics of LSR components, also for complicated geometries and extensive flow lengths.

As it is already tradition, SIGMA Engineering took part in the conference “Kunststoffe + Simulation 2016” (Plastics + Simulation 2016) organized by Hanser Verlag. This event, which gathers its attendees to discuss application trends and new developments in plastics simulation, proved to be the perfect scenario to demonstrate the capabilities of its SIGMASOFT® Virtual Molding technology in supporting mold design and optimizing production conditions.

Partnering with Momentive Performance Materials and CVA Silicone, SIGMA Engineering gave a presentation on the topic “Reality and Simulation – Physical and Virtual Production of Ursula”. The presentation demonstrated how SIGMASOFT® was used to support the material selection of the design article “Ursula”, an LSR mesh to carry bottles.

The article, named after Ursula Andress (the first bond Girl), has a long flow length and an interlaced geometry. These characteristics require a material with high stability in rheological properties and curing kinetics, as well as an elaborate tempering and cold runner concept.

1

The Mesh Ursula, designed to carry bottles, posed several technical challenges due to its significant flow length. Copyright © 2015 Momentive Performance Materials Inc. (left) and CVA Silicone, part of the CVA Technology Pure Silicone Group, (right). All rights reserved.

SIGMASOFT® Virtual Molding was used to select the best material for this application. Two LSR 70 Shore A grades where compared. It was observed that the flowability of the first material was lower, so that only 90% of the cavity was filled. The second grade in comparison, allowed a 100% of filling. Thus the Siloprene LSR 2670, from Momentive, was selected for production. The analysis of the curing degree during part filling revealed the reason for the different behavior: The first material showed a curing degree of over 15% already during filling, what impaired a proper flow; the second cured below 5% during filling, allowing a smooth filling.

The example demonstrated how SIGMASOFT® Virtual Molding can be used to support the mold and process design from the very project beginning. Besides optimizing geometries and process parameters, it helps to make sound decisions for the material selection, and furthermore can help to understand challenges for existing processes and to verify potential solutions.

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