The Isoplaten -"Thermal Performance of Electrically Heated Platens" - May 2011

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Acrolab’s Isoplaten (“The Intuitive Platen”) redistributes the energy generated by standard cartridge heaters to give molders rapid thermal recovery and unparalleled and linear temperature …

Acrolab’s Isoplaten (“The Intuitive Platen”) redistributes the energy generated by standard cartridge heaters to give molders rapid thermal recovery and unparalleled and linear temperature distribution along the whole platen surface. Your tools operate with reduced energy demands, produce better quality molded parts and allow you to use faster curing compounds with narrower thermal processing windows.

Uniformly Cure Parts Resulting In Better Quality

• Reduce cycle time• Reduce Thermal Energy Required From Heaters• Energy Cost Savings• Save On Time• Evenly Heat Thermal Sensitive Parts• Eliminate Hot Spots• Reduce Scrap

Acrolab’s Isoplatens provide high levels of thermal stability to press platen applications and can be designed for electric, oil, or steam heating. Integral water cooling lines for fast process temperature changes are available. The standard Isoplaten is electronically heated and has an operating range of ambient to 500°F.

Acrolab engineered bi-level Isoplatens can hold a thermal uniformity of +/- 5°F over 90% of the surface of the Isoplaten. These results allow a substantial
improvement in cycle times, start up times, thermal recovery rates, and improved part quality.
The Isoplaten’s Unique thermal uniformity permits the use of one single zone temperature controller for the entire platen. No special multi-zone controls, heaters, or thermocouples are required.

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  • 1. Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011
  • 2. Introduction to Isoplatens®  Heated platens are fundamental components in the molding process of a variety of composites. Platens provide heat necessary to complete the molding /curing reaction.  Conventionally heated platens consist of a single level of heaters housed in a plate. Acrolab’s Isoplaten® is a bi-level matrix of heaters and Isobar® heat pipes housed in a metal plate.Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 2
  • 3. Standard Platen With Heaters Standard electrically heated platen with five cartridge heaters and one thermocoupleAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 3
  • 4. Standard Platen With Heaters Electrically heated Isoplaten® with 5 cartridge heaters (yellow) and 17 Isobars® (white & red)Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 4
  • 5. Standard Platens  Standard platens do not provide uniform temperature distribution on the plate surface.  Temperatures can vary by up to 25 C along the surface of the platen.  Non-uniformity can result in insufficient curing, increased cycle times, Thermogram of a standard electrically heated platen decreased thermal recovery, and poor part quality.Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 5
  • 6. Isoplatens® “Provide for exceptional temperature uniformity” Temperature distribution varies only 2 C across 95% of the platen. Temperature uniformity results in: 1. Decrease in under and over cured parts 2. Rapid temperature recovery 3. Decreased cycle times 4. Reduced energy consumption 5. Improved overall part quality Thermogram of an electrically heated Isoplaten®Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 6
  • 7. Research Experiment Objective: A comparative analysis of an electrically heated Isoplaten® vs. a conventional or standard electrically heated platen of the same physical dimensions, the same thermal energy in-put and with the same load conditions.Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 7
  • 8. Experiment Stages  Steady state, loading, boiling/thermal footprint growth, beginning of recovery, recovery, complete recovery.  Isoplaten® with 20mL of water in 4” load container; central loading location (5)  Raw data from “Thermacam Researcher” as seen during experiment.Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 8
  • 9. Overview: Research Experiment 1. To characterize the difference in thermal response between conventional standard platens and Isoplatens® when subjected to various thermal loads, at different load positions. 2. A comparative examination of the surface thermal uniformity of either platen when they are subjected to random cartridge heater failures. Standard Platen Isoplaten ®Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 9
  • 10. Experiment - Set up Equipment 18” x 18” Isoplaten IR Camera: FLIR SC3000 Sampling rate: 1 Hz Image size: 320 x 180 DAC: Real-time monitoring Recording of IR image sequence Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 10
  • 11. Configuration common to both platens Loading Container Loading Positions Load ChamberAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 11
  • 12. Experiment Phases (3) Phase 1: Comparative dynamic thermal load analysis a) Steady state b) Loading c) Boiling/thermal footprint growth, d) Beginning of recovery e) Recovery f) Complete recoveryAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 12
  • 13. Phase 2 – Position #520 mL of water in 4” load chamber; central loading position #5(both platens) Load Chamber Position# 5Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 13
  • 14. Position #5 - Temperature difference Isotherms  Loading at location 5 (center of platen)  T(t)-T0 are plotted during the recovery periodAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 14
  • 15. Position #5 - Animated sequences Absolute Temperature Platen IsoplatenAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 15
  • 16. Position #5 - Animated sequences Temperature Difference Platen IsoplatenAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 16
  • 17. Thermographic video sequence 1. Steady state 2. Loading 3. Boiling/thermal footprint growth, 4. Beginning of recovery 5. Recovery 6. Complete recoveryAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 17
  • 18. Position #5 - Thermal videoAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 18
  • 19. Phase 2 – Position #720 mL of water in 4” load chamber; central loading position #7(Both platens) Load Chamber Position# 7Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 19
  • 20. Position #7 - Animated sequences Absolute Temperature Platen Isoplaten The true measured temperatureAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 20
  • 21. Position #7 - Animated sequences Temperature Difference Platen Isoplaten The temperature difference between the two platensAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 21
  • 22. Conventional platen vs. Isoplaten® Conventional Platen Acrolab Isoplaten® Isoplaten:  Uniform heat distribution = Quality improvement  Reduction of hot spots in molds = Quality Improvement  Uniform cure rate = Quality Improvement  Improvement of cycle time = Productivity improvement  Reduction of thermal energy required from heaters = Energy SavingsAcrolab Ltd.© May 2011 22
  • 23. Summary Steady-state performance of the Isoplaten is improved over that of the platen, even with heater failure. Recovery time is reduced in all loading modes: C (θ = 63%) 7 – 26 % T (within 1 C of SS) 14 – 30 % (or more) The recovery time is mostly affected by load position.Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 23
  • 24. Results The Isoplaten® provides for curing times thatare shorter than the standard platen. The time over the standard platen. fastercuring Isoplaten® provides for a 44-54% The Isoplaten® also has a faster recoverytime. The Isoplaten® will decrease cycle times andenergy consumption.Acrolab Ltd.© May 2011 24
  • 25. Acrolab R & D Labs & Manufacturing Centre Let our team at Acrolab optimize your thermal footprint … call today. 1 800 265 9542 Toll free in North America 1 800 465 9674 Fax 519 944 5900 Direct www.acrolab.com ©Acrolab 2011 Advanced Research & Development 25