The prediction of shrinkage and warpage of crystalline polymers is quite difficult. This is because of the complications of the crystallization process and associated material property changes. In typical injection molding of semi-crystalline polymers, it is difficult to calculate crystallinity accurately because of its complicated dependence on temperature, time and stress. In the case of slowly-crystallizing polymers, typically the crystallinity of the polymer remains small during the process. In this case, therefore, the importance of accurate calculation of crystallinity is decreased. The difficulty in this case is the measurement of material properties under variable crystallinity because of the possible crystallization during measurement. In the present study, methods have been developed to obtain material properties which include the effect of crystallinity. The material properties measured include viscosity, thermal conductivity, heat capacity, PvT relation and crystallization kinetics.
Injection-molding experiments have been conducted to measure the shrinkage of a part using a slowly-crystallizing polymer. Shrinkage has been measured by comparing the mold cavity dimension and the dimension of the molded sample. The polymer used in this study is PET (polyethylene terephthalate).
A simulation program has been developed to analyze the injection-molding process. This program is based on quiescent crystallization kinetics. The predicted shrinkage and measured shrinkage are found to agree reasonably well.
© 1997, Carl Hanser Verlag, Munich