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Extrusion Simulation and

Optimization of Profile Die Design


03-25-2003

By

Srinivasa Rao Vaddiraju


Advisor

Prof. Milivoje Kostic

Introduction

Dryer

Extrusion describes the process by which a polymer


melt is pushed across a metal die, which continuously
shapes the melt into the desired form.
Polymer
pellets Dopants
Feeding
Hopper

Extruder

Breaker
plate Die
Gear
pump

Cooling

Haul-off
Cutter

Calibrator

Measurement

A Schematic of Profile Extrusion Line at FNAL

Quality factors
Extrudate swell

rearrangement of the velocity profile as the polymer


leaves the die

Draw down
Cooling
Insufficient mixing in the extruder
Uneven die body temperatures and raw material variations
Non-uniform viscosity in the die
Non-uniform swelling
Non-uniform draw down

Objectives
An attempt to develop a possible strategy for effective die design in profile
extrusion
Investigate the die swell behavior of the polymer and to predict the optimum
die profile-shape and dimensions, including the pin(s) profile, to obtain the
required dimensions and quality of the extrudate.
Investigate the swell phenomenon and mass flow balance affected by different
parameters like die lengths, flow rates, exponent in viscosity function etc.
Simulate the flow and heat transfer of molten polymer inside the die and in the
free-flow region after the die exit, and compute pressure, temperature,
velocity, stress and strain rate distributions over the entire simulation domain.
Investigate and understand over-all polymer extrusion process, and integrate
the simulation results with the experimental data, to optimize the die design
and ultimately to achieve better quality and dimensions of the extrudate.
Prepare the complete design of dies, including blue prints.

Objectives
An attempt to develop a possible
strategy for effective die design in
profile extrusion
Investigate the die swell behavior of the polymer and to predict the optimum
die profile-shape and dimensions, including the pin(s) profile, to obtain the
required dimensions and quality of the extrudate.
Investigate the swell phenomenon and mass flow balance affected by different
parameters like die lengths, flow rates, exponent in viscosity function etc.
Simulate the flow and heat transfer of molten polymer inside the die and in the
free-flow region after the die exit, and compute pressure, temperature, velocity,
stress and strain rate distributions over the entire simulation domain.
Investigate and understand over-all polymer extrusion process, and integrate
the simulation results with the experimental data, to optimize the die design and
ultimately to achieve better quality and dimensions of the extrudate.
Prepare the complete design of dies, including blue prints.

Objectives
An attempt to develop a possible strategy for effective die design in profile
extrusion

Investigate the die swell behavior of the


polymer and to predict the optimum die
profile-shape and dimensions, including
the pin(s) profile, to obtain the required
dimensions and quality of the extrudate.
Investigate the swell phenomenon and mass flow balance affected by different
parameters like die lengths, flow rates, exponent in viscosity function etc.
Simulate the flow and heat transfer of molten polymer inside the die and in the
free-flow region after the die exit, and compute pressure, temperature, velocity,
stress and strain rate distributions over the entire simulation domain.
Investigate and understand over-all polymer extrusion process, and integrate the
simulation results with the experimental data, to optimize the die design and
ultimately to achieve better quality and dimensions of the extrudate.
Prepare the complete design of dies, including blue prints.

Objectives
An attempt to develop a possible strategy for effective die design in profile
extrusion
Investigate the die swell behavior of the polymer and to predict the optimum
die profile-shape and dimensions, including the pin(s) profile, to obtain the
required dimensions and quality of the extrudate.

Investigate the swell phenomenon and


mass flow balance affected by different
parameters like die lengths, flow rates,
exponent in viscosity function etc.
Simulate the flow and heat transfer of molten polymer inside the die and in the
free-flow region after the die exit, and compute pressure, temperature, velocity,
stress and strain rate distributions over the entire simulation domain.
Investigate and understand over-all polymer extrusion process, and integrate the
simulation results with the experimental data, to optimize the die design and
ultimately to achieve better quality and dimensions of the extrudate.
Prepare the complete design of dies, including blue prints.

Objectives
An attempt to develop a possible strategy for effective die design in profile
extrusion
Investigate the die swell behavior of the polymer and to predict the optimum die
profile-shape and dimensions, including the pin(s) profile, to obtain the required
dimensions and quality of the extrudate.
Investigate the swell phenomenon and mass flow balance affected by different
parameters like die lengths, flow rates, exponent in viscosity function etc.

Simulate the flow and heat transfer of


molten polymer inside the die and in the
free-flow region after the die exit, and
compute pressure, temperature, velocity,
stress and strain rate distributions over
the entire simulation domain.
Investigate and understand over-all polymer extrusion process, and integrate the
simulation results with the experimental data, to optimize the die design and
ultimately to achieve better quality and dimensions of the extrudate.
Prepare the complete design of dies, including blue prints.

Objectives
An attempt to develop a possible strategy for effective die design in profile extrusion
Investigate the die swell behavior of the polymer and to predict the optimum die profileshape and dimensions, including the pin(s) profile, to obtain the required dimensions and
quality of the extrudate.
Investigate the swell phenomenon and mass flow balance affected by different parameters
like die lengths, flow rates, exponent in viscosity function etc.
Simulate the flow and heat transfer of molten polymer inside the die and in the free-flow
region after the die exit, and compute pressure, temperature, velocity, stress and strain rate
distributions over the entire simulation domain.

Investigate and understand over-all


polymer extrusion process, and
integrate the simulation results with the
experimental data, to optimize the die
design and ultimately to achieve better
quality and dimensions of the extrudate.
Prepare the complete design of dies, including blue prints.

Objectives
An attempt to develop a possible strategy for effective die design in profile extrusion
Investigate the die swell behavior of the polymer and to predict the optimum die profileshape and dimensions, including the pin(s) profile, to obtain the required dimensions and
quality of the extrudate.
Investigate the swell phenomenon and mass flow balance affected by different
parameters like die lengths, flow rates, exponent in viscosity function etc.
Simulate the flow and heat transfer of molten polymer inside the die and in the free-flow
region after the die exit, and compute pressure, temperature, velocity, stress and strain
rate distributions over the entire simulation domain.
Investigate and understand over-all polymer extrusion process, and integrate the
simulation results with the experimental data, to optimize the die design and ultimately
to achieve better quality and dimensions of the extrudate.

Prepare the complete design of


dies, including blue prints.

Design Methodology
Using Finite Element based CFD code Polyflow
Using the method of Inverse Extrusion
To fully understand the extrusion processes and the influence of
various parameters on the quality of the final product.
Integrate the simulation results and the experimental data to
obtain more precise extrudate shape.

Literature Review
The text book Dynamics of Polymeric Liquids by R.B.Bird gives a
detailed overview of non-Newtonian fluid dynamics, which is important to
understand the flow of polymers.
The text book Extrusion Dies by Walter Michaeli gives an extensive
representation of extrusion processes and guidelines for the design of dies.
The text book Plastics Extrusion Technology Handbook by Levis gives a
clear representation of the rheology of materials and the technology of
extrusion processes.
Woei-Shyong Lee and Sherry Hsueh-Yu Ho have investigated the die swell
behavior of a polymer melt using finite element method and simulated flow
of Newtonian fluid and designed a profile extrusion die with a geometry of a
quarter ring profile
Louis G. Reifschneider has designed a coat hanger extrusion die using a
parametric based three-dimensional polymer flow simulation algorithm,
where the shape of the manifold and land are modified to minimize the
velocity variation across the die exit.
W.A. Gifford has demonstrated through an actual example how the efficient
use of 3-D CFD algorithms and automatic finite element mesh generators can
be used to eliminate much of the cut and try from profile die design.

Governing Equations
Continuity Equation
Momentum Equation

Where,

vx v y vz 0
x
y
z

P xx xy xz

x
x
y
z
P yx yy yz

y
x
y
z

P zx zy zz

z
x
y
z

P is the pressure,
is the extra stress tensor,
v is the velocity.

Energy Equation

E acc E conv E cond E diss


T

C
the accumulation term, acc
v
t

T
T
T

vy
vz
the convection term, E conv C v v x
x
y
z

T
T
T

the conduction term,


cond

x x y y z z
the dissipation term,

Where,

E v x v y v z v x v y
diss
xx
yy
zz
xy

x
y
z
y x
v y v z
v x v z

xz

yz
z x
z y

Cv is the specific heat capacity of the material,


T is the temperature,
is the density,
k is the thermal conductivity.

Die Design
The art of die design is to predict properly
irregular die shape (with minimum number of
trials) which will allow melt flow to reshape and
solidify into desired (regular) extrudate profile.
The correct geometry of the die cannot be
completely determined from engineering
calculations.
Numerical methods

POLYFLOW
Finite-element CFD code
Predict three-dimensional free surfaces
Inverse extrusion capability
Strong non-linearities
Evolution procedure

Flowchart for numerical simulation using Polyflow


1. Draw the geometry in Pro-E (or) other CAD
software and export to GAMBIT
2. Draw the geometry in GAMBIT (or) import from
other CAD software and mesh it.
Modify the
mesh

3. Specify Polymer properties in Polydata


4. Specify boundary conditions in Polydata

Change the remeshing


techniques and/or
solver methods

5. Specify remeshing technique and solver


method in Polydata
6. Specify the evolution parameters in Polydata

Modify the
evolution
parameters
No

7. Polyflow solves the conservation equations using


the specified data and boundary conditions
8.Is the solution
converged?
Yes
Stop

General Assumptions

0
t

The flow is steady

and incompressible v 0
Body forces and Inertia effects are negligible in
comparison with viscous and pressure forces.
Specific heat at constant pressure, Cp, and thermal
conductivity, k, are constant

Boundary Conditions
Inlet: Fully developed inlet velocity corresponding to actual mass flow rate of
50 kg/hr and uniform inlet temperature (473 K or 200 C).
Die, spider and pin walls: No slip at the die walls (Vn =Vs = 0; normal and streamline
velocities, respectively), and uniform die wall temperature 473 K.
Symmetry planes: Shear stress Fs = 0, normal velocity Vn = 0 and normal heat flux q n =0.
Free surface: Zero pressure and traction/shear at boundary (F n = 0, Fs = 0, and Vn =0),
and convection heat transfer from the free surface to surrounding roomtemperature air.
Kinematic balance equation

v .n 0

on free

Outlet: Normal stress Fn =0, Tangential Velocity Vs = 0, Pressure = 0.0 (reference


pressure) and normal heat flux qn =0.
All domains: Viscous dissipation was neglected for all flow conditions (after verification).

Boundary Conditions

Inlet: Fully developed inlet velocity


corresponding to actual mass flow rate of 50 kg/hr
and uniform inlet temperature (473 K or 200 C).
Die, spider and pin walls: No slip at the die walls (Vn =Vs = 0; normal and streamline
velocities, respectively), and uniform die wall temperature 473 K.
Symmetry planes: Shear stress Fs = 0, normal velocity Vn = 0 and normal heat flux q n =0.
Free surface: Zero pressure and traction/shear at boundary (F n = 0, Fs = 0, and Vn =0),
and convection heat transfer from the free surface to surrounding roomtemperature air.
Kinematic balance equation

v .n 0

on free

Outlet: Normal stress Fn =0, Tangential Velocity Vs = 0, Pressure = 0.0 (reference


pressure) and normal heat flux qn =0.
All domains: Viscous dissipation was neglected for all flow conditions (after verification).

Boundary Conditions
Inlet: Fully developed inlet velocity corresponding to actual mass flow rate of
50 kg/hr and uniform inlet temperature (473 K or 200 C).

Die, spider and pin walls: No slip at the die walls


(Vn =Vs = 0; normal and streamline velocities,
respectively), and uniform die wall temperature
473 K.

Symmetry planes: Shear stress Fs = 0, normal velocity Vn = 0 and normal heat flux q n =0.

Free surface: Zero pressure and traction/shear at boundary (F n = 0, Fs = 0, and Vn =0),


and convection heat transfer from the free surface to surrounding roomtemperature air.
Kinematic balance equation

v .n 0

on free

Outlet: Normal stress Fn =0, Tangential Velocity Vs = 0, Pressure = 0.0 (reference


pressure) and normal heat flux qn =0.
All domains: Viscous dissipation was neglected for all flow conditions (after verification).

Boundary Conditions
Inlet: Fully developed inlet velocity corresponding to actual mass flow rate of 50 kg/hr
and uniform inlet temperature (473 K or 200 C).
Die, spider and pin walls: No slip at the die walls (Vn =Vs = 0; normal and streamline
velocities, respectively), and uniform die wall temperature 473 K.

Symmetry planes: Shear stress Fs = 0, normal


velocity Vn = 0 and normal heat flux q n =0.
Free surface: Zero pressure and traction/shear at boundary (F n = 0, Fs = 0, and Vn =0),
and convection heat transfer from the free surface to surrounding roomtemperature air.
Kinematic balance equation

v .n 0

on free

Outlet: Normal stress Fn =0, Tangential Velocity Vs = 0, Pressure = 0.0 (reference


pressure) and normal heat flux qn =0.
All domains: Viscous dissipation was neglected for all flow conditions (after verification).

Boundary Conditions
Inlet: Fully developed inlet velocity corresponding to actual mass flow rate of 50 kg/hr
and uniform inlet temperature (473 K or 200 C).
Die, spider and pin walls: No slip at the die walls (Vn =Vs = 0; normal and streamline
velocities, respectively), and uniform die wall temperature 473 K.
Symmetry planes: Shear stress Fs = 0, normal velocity Vn = 0 and normal heat flux
qn =0.

Free surface: Zero pressure and traction/shear at


boundary (Fn = 0, Fs = 0, and Vn =0), and
convection heat transfer from the free surface to
surrounding room-temperature air.
Kinematic balance equation

v .n 0 on free

Outlet: Normal stress Fn =0, Tangential Velocity Vs = 0, Pressure = 0.0 (reference


pressure) and normal heat flux qn =0.
All domains: Viscous dissipation was neglected for all flow conditions (after verification).

Boundary Conditions
Inlet: Fully developed inlet velocity corresponding to actual mass flow rate of 50 kg/hr
and uniform inlet temperature (473 K or 200 C).
Die, spider and pin walls: No slip at the die walls (Vn =Vs = 0; normal and streamline
velocities, respectively), and uniform die wall temperature 473 K.
Symmetry planes: Shear stress Fs = 0, normal velocity Vn = 0 and normal heat flux
qn =0.
Free surface: Zero pressure and traction/shear at boundary (F n = 0, Fs = 0, and Vn =0),
and convection heat transfer from the free surface to surrounding roomtemperature air.
Kinematic balance equation

v .n 0

on free

Outlet: Normal stress Fn =0, Tangential Velocity


Vs = 0, Pressure = 0.0 (reference pressure) and
normal heat flux qn =0.

All domains: Viscous dissipation was neglected for all flow conditions (after verification).

Boundary Conditions
Inlet: Fully developed inlet velocity corresponding to actual mass flow rate of 50 kg/hr
and uniform inlet temperature (473 K or 200 C).
Die, spider and pin walls: No slip at the die walls (Vn =Vs = 0; normal and streamline
velocities, respectively), and uniform die wall temperature 473 K.
Symmetry planes: Shear stress Fs = 0, normal velocity Vn = 0 and normal heat flux
qn =0.
Free surface: Zero pressure and traction/shear at boundary (F n = 0, Fs = 0, and Vn =0),
and convection heat transfer from the free surface to surrounding roomtemperature air.
Kinematic balance equation

v .n 0

on free

Outlet: Normal stress Fn =0, Tangential Velocity Vs = 0, Pressure = 0.0 (reference


pressure) and normal heat flux qn =0.

All domains: Viscous dissipation was neglected


for all flow conditions (after verification).

Material Data
Styron 663, mixed with Scintillator dopants
Measured by, Datapoint Labs

Carreau-Yasuda Law for viscosity data:

0 1

n 1
a a

Zero shear rate viscosity, 0 = 36,580 Pa-s


Infinite shear rate viscosity, = 0 Pa-s
Natural time, = 0.902
Transition Parameter, a = 0.585
Exponent, n = 0.267
Density, = 1040 Kg/m3
Specific Heat, cp = 1200 J/Kg-K
Thermal Conductivity, k = 0.12307 W/m-K
Coefficient of thermal expansion, = 0.5e-5 m/m-K

Styron viscosity data, with and


without Scintillator dopants
106

Styron 663
d Doped Styron 663

105

180 0C
200 0C
220 0C

104

103

102

10-2

10-1

100

101

102

103

Profiles
Rectangular profile die with one hole
Rectangular profile die with ten holes

Rectangular profile die with


one hole
0.11

1.0

2.0
Required extrudate is a rectangular cross section of 1 cm 2 cm
with a circular hole of 1.1 mm diameter at its center
ALL DIMENSIONS ARE IN CM

Sensitivity analysis of die swell and inverse


extrusion capabilities of Polyflow
Percentage Differences
P1(0,y)
0
-0.007%

P5(x,0)
0
-0.001%

P2(0,y)
0
-0.002%

P4(x,0)
0
-0.001%

P3(x)
0
-0.001%

P3(y)
0
0.002%

0.252 0.003%
0.28271 1.495%
0.3522 3.692%
0.453 8.439%
0.5286 11.354%

0.001%
-1.765%
-4.583%
-11.776%
-17.410%

0.000%
0.646%
1.619%
3.935%
5.718%

0.000%
0.380%
0.979%
2.521%
3.806%

0.000%
0.465%
1.138%
2.686%
3.876%

0.000%
0.358%
0.864%
1.995%
2.843%

1.20E+05 0.007%

0.002%

0.000%

0.000%

0.000%

-0.001%

0.002%
0.000%
0.002%
0.002%

0.000%
0.000%
-0.001%
-0.001%

0.000%
0.000%
-0.001%
-0.001%

0.000%
0.000%
0.000%
-0.001%

-0.001%
0.000%
0.001%
0.001%

0.640%
0.207%
0.000%
-0.189%
-0.352%

0.017%
0.014%
0.000%
-0.010%
-0.016%

0.232%
0.073%
0.000%
-0.069%
-0.128%

0.190%
0.060%
0.000%
-0.058%
-0.105%

0.245%
0.079%
0.000%
-0.074%
-0.136%

0.095%
0.030%
0.000%
-0.029%
-0.054%

2 -2.757%
0.5 0.000%

0.104%
0.000%

-1.025%
0.000%

-0.701%
0.000%

-0.932%
0.000%

-0.406%
0.000%

2.31685 0.914%
4.6337 0.000%
7.53 -0.507%
9.2674 -0.693%
-0.18%

0.020%
0.000%
-0.030%
-0.042%
1.82%

0.329%
0.000%
-0.182%
-0.249%
0.17%

0.269%
0.000%
-0.148%
-0.203%
0.04%

0.346%
0.000%
-0.193%
-0.262%
0.3%

0.133%
0.000%
-0.075%
-0.102%
0.61%

Reference
Inertia terms not included
Exponent in Carreau Yasuda model, n

Zero shear
rate viscosity,

0 (Pa-s) 1.34E+05 0.006%


2.00E+05 0.000%
2.40E+05 0.001%
2.80E+05 0.000%

Flow rate (m /s)

Transition
Parameter, a
Time constant,

Inverse Extrusion

1.54E-05
2.15E-05
2.58E-05
3.04E-05
3.61E-05

P2
(0,y)

P1
(0,y) P5
(x,0)

P3
(x,y)

P4
(x,0)

Full domain of the extrusion die

Melt flow
direction

Half domain of the extrusion die

Section 3

Melt flow
direction

Section 2
Die lip

Section 1

Simulation domain with boundary


conditions

1. Inlet (Fully Developed Flow)


2. Wall (Vn = 0, Vs = 0)
3. Symmetry (Vn = 0, Fs = 0)
4. Free Surface (Fs = 0, Fn = 0, V.n = 0)
5. Outlet (Fn = 0, Vs = 0)

Finite element 3-D domain


and die-lip mesh

30,872 elements
Skewness < 0.33
Melt flow
direction
Die Lip

Windows XP
2.52 GHz Processor
1 GB RAM

19 hours and 36 minutes of CPU time

Contours of static pressure

Melt flow
direction

Die lip

Contours of velocity magnitude at


different iso-surfaces

Melt flow
direction

Die lip

Contours of temperature distribution

Melt flow
direction

Die lip

Contours of shear rate

Die lip
Melt flow
direction

Y (mm)

Existing die, corresponding simulation


and new improved-die profiles
New Die (Simulated)
Existing Die

Desired Extrudate
Existing-Die Extrudate
(Simulated)

X (mm)

Exploded view of the extrusion die

2 D-View of the extrusion die

Melt flow
direction

Blue prints

Preland

Dieland

Pin

Rectangular profile die with


ten holes
0.11

0.5
10.0

Required extrudate is a rectangular cross section of


0.5 cm 10 cm with ten equally spaced centerline circular holes
of 1.1 mm diameter.
ALL DIMENSIONS ARE IN CM

Full domain of the extrusion die

Melt flow
direction

Half domain of the extrusion die


Melt Pump Adapter,
Adapter 1 and Adapter 2

Spider

Die land
Free Surface
Melt flow
direction
Die lip

Simulation domain with


boundary conditions
1
2

4
Melt flow
direction
3
1. Inlet (Fully Developed Flow)
2. Wall (Vn = 0, Vs = 0)
3. Symmetry (Vn = 0, Fs = 0)
4. Free Surface (Fs = 0, Fn = 0, V.n = 0)
5. Outlet (Fn = 0, Vs = 0)

Finite element 3-D domain and


half of extrudate profile mesh

19,479 elements
Skewness < 0.5
Melt flow
direction

Half domain of the extrusion die


(without free surface) and division
of outlet into 10 areas
d2

out8
out10 out9

out7

d0

d1
Melt flow
direction

out6

out5 out4

out3

out2

out1

Percentage of Mass flow rate in


different exit segments

Windows XP
2.52 GHz Processor
1 GB RAM

One hour of CPU time

Contours of Static pressure

Melt flow
direction

Die lip

Contours of Velocity magnitude at different isosurfaces and at centerline of exit


Velocity
Magnitude
(m/s)

X-Coordinate (m)

Melt flow
direction
Die lip

Contours of Temperature distribution

Melt flow
direction
Die lip

Contours of Shear rate and Viscosity

Melt flow
direction
Die lip

Melt flow
direction

Viscosity

Shear rate

Simulated die and required


extrudate profiles

Simulated Die
Required Extrudate

Percentage of mass flow rate for


designed and balanced die
0

Exploded view of the extrusion die


Melt pump
adapter
Adapter 1
Adapter 2
Preland
Dieland

Melt flow
direction

Blue prints

Melt pump adapter

Whole die

Adapter 1

Adapter 2

Spider

Die land

Conclusions
The optimum dimensions of the die to attain more
balanced flow at the exit were obtained.
The effect of inertia terms is found to be negligible
for polymer flows at low Reynolds number.
The exponent of the Carreau-Yasuda model, or the
slope of the viscosity vs shear rate curve, has a
significant effect on the die swell.
The flow in the die appeared to be smooth with no
re-circulation regions.

Recommendations for future


improvements
Polymer viscoelastic properties
Include flow, cooling, solidification and vacuuming in
and after the calibrator
Radiation effects for free surface flow
Pulling force at the end of the free surface
Pressure of the compressed air
Non-uniform mesh

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
Prof. Milivoje Kostic
Prof. Pradip Majumdar
Prof. M.J. Kim
Prof. Lou Reifschneider
NICADD (Northern Illinois Centre for
Accelerator and Detector Development), NIU
Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory,
Batavia, IL

QUESTIONS ?