Vibration Assisted Injection Molding for PLA with Enhanced Mechanical Properties and Reduced Cycle Time

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Vibration assisted molding (VAIM) is a process in which vibrational movement is introduced to the injection screw during the injection stage of molding processes. This research was focused on the effect of processing parameters on physical characteristics of poly-lactic acid (PLA) during vibration assisted injection molding (VAIM). In vibration assisted injection molding processes, the travel of the injecting screw is moved back and forth to create an oscillatory motion. The frequency, duration and initiation point of the motion can be individually controlled. It was observed that VAIM based PLA products have higher total crystallinity than conventionally molded PLA products under identical conditions sans the vibration. Based on these results it was hypothesized that the vibration primarily affects the molecular arrangement of the polymer chains which in turn affects the nucleation density and thus the crystallinity. In addition, it was observed that the cycle time can be reduced by at least 25% when vibration was applied.

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Journal: TechConnect Briefs
Volume: TechConnect Briefs 2019
Published: June 17, 2019
Pages: 446 - 449
Industry sector: Personal & Home Care, Food & Agriculture
Topics: Personal & Home Care, Food & Agriculture, Sustainable Materials
ISBN: 978-0-9988782-8-7