Research Papers: Design for Manufacture and the Life Cycle

Design and Experimental Assessment of Variable-Geometry Dies for Polymer Extrusion

[+] Author and Article Information
Bingjue Li

Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Design and
Manufacture of Micro-Nano
Biomedical Instruments,
School of Mechanical Engineering,
Southeast University,
Nanjing 211189, China
e-mail: libj@seu.edu.cn

David H. Myszka, Andrew P. Murray

Department of Mechanical and
Aerospace Engineering,
University of Dayton,
Dayton, OH 45469

Contributed by the Design for Manufacturing Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MECHANICAL DESIGN. Manuscript received April 11, 2017; final manuscript received October 17, 2017; published online November 9, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Rikard Söderberg.

J. Mech. Des 140(1), 011701 (Nov 09, 2017) (12 pages) Paper No: MD-17-1263; doi: 10.1115/1.4038297 History: Received April 11, 2017; Revised October 17, 2017

This paper presents a design methodology and experimental assessment of variable-geometry dies that enable the extrusion of plastic parts with a nonconstant cross section. These shape-changing dies can produce complex plastic components at higher manufacturing speeds and with lower tooling costs than injection molding. Planar, rigid-body, shape-changing mechanism synthesis techniques are used to create the links that comprise the variable-geometry die exit orifice. Mechanical design guidelines for production-worthy dies are proposed. Several dies were designed and constructed to provide significant changes in the cross-sectional shape and area of extruded parts. Experiments were conducted in a production environment. An analysis of the repeatability of the cross-sectional profiles along the length of the part is presented.

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Fig. 1

(a) Components of a polymer extrusion machine and (b) a conventional stationary geometry die

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Fig. 2

Joint designs developed and evaluated for variable-geometry dies [10]: (a) crescent joint, (b) corner joint, and (c)slidingjoint

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Fig. 3

Given a set of design profiles, a rigid-body chain morphs to approximate the shape of each profile: (a) design profiles and (b) a rigid-body chain approximating the set of profiles

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Fig. 4

Types of design profiles include (a) open profiles, (b) closed profiles, and fixed-end profiles: (c) fixed-end RR-type profiles, (d) fixed-end PP-type profiles, and (e) fixed-end RP-type profiles

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Fig. 5

A rigid-body chain is constructed to match the profiles of the crescent die: (a) target profiles of the crescent die that morphs from a parallelogram to a rectangular shape and (b) the rigid-body chain generated to approximate the crescent die profiles

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Fig. 6

Die design models that create polymer parts that change from rectangular to parallelogram sections. The extreme die exit sections for each die are shown. (a) Crescent die, (b) crescent-corner die, and (c) crescent-corner-prismatic die.

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Fig. 7

A rigid-body chain is constructed to match the profiles of the die that achieves significant area change: (a) target profiles and (b) the rigid-body chain that approximates each target profile

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Fig. 8

A variable-geometry extrusion die that achieves drastic shape change: (a) design model and (b) physical die

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Fig. 9

Die experimental evaluation

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Fig. 10

Comparison of different profiles, captured after actuation sequences



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