Improved mathematical modeling for the sheet reheat phase during thermoforming

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Journal titlePolymer Engineering & Science
Pages625636; # of pages: 12
AbstractIn any thermoforming process, plastic sheet heating is the most important phase as it is responsible for final part quality as well as overall process efficiency and productivity. The goal of the study reported here was to improve existing mathematical models to accurately predict the temperature profile inside a heated sheet, where the model could be used to better control the overall thermoforming process. A mathematical model with temperature dependent, variable sheet material properties including density, thermal diffusivity, specific heat, and thermal conductivity was developed and validated against experimental data. Models with constant and variable plastic sheet properties were created, simulated, and compared in Matlab. The models were validated by experiments which obtained temperature profiles at different depths within a plastic sheet by inserting thermocouples and recording temperatures. Further, the effect of sheet color on heating was investigated by considering two extreme cases: white (transparent) and black (opaque) colored sheets, and the effect of oven air temperature and velocity on sheet heating was also investigated. Results indicated that a variable properties model was needed to control sheet reheating especially with narrow forming windows, and that the heating profiles required for colored and noncolored sheets were very different.
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AffiliationNRC Industrial Materials Institute; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number21268229
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Record identifier51c4f966-fe69-4ade-9b12-8a5351b108f2
Record created2013-06-06
Record modified2016-05-09
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