3D BEM-based cooling-channel shape optimization for injection moulding processes

Abstract : Today, around 30 % of manufactured plastic goods rely on injection moulding. The cooling time can represents more than 70 % of the injection cycle. Moreover, in order to avoid defects in the manufactured plastic parts, the temperature in the mould must be homogeneous. We propose in this paper a practical methodology to optimize both the position and the shape of the cooling channels in 3D injection moulding processes. For the evaluation of the temperature required both by the objective and the constraint functions, we must solve 3D heat-transfer problems via numerical simulation. We solve the heat-transfer problem using Boundary Element Method (BEM). This yields a reduction of the dimension of the computational space from 3D to 2D, avoiding full 3D remeshing: only the surface of the cooling channels needs to be remeshed at each evaluation required by the optimization algorithm. We propose a general optimization model that attempts at minimizing the desired overall low temperature of the plastic-part surface subject to constraints imposing homogeneity of the temperature. Encouraging preliminary results on two semi-industrial plastic parts show that our optimization methodology is viable.
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Nicolas Pirc, Fabrice Schmidt, Marcel Mongeau, Florian Bugarin. 3D BEM-based cooling-channel shape optimization for injection moulding processes. International Journal for Simulation and Multidisciplinary Design Optimization, EDP sciences/NPU (China), 2008, 2 (3), pp.245-252. ⟨10.1051/ijsmdo:2008033⟩. ⟨hal-01349672⟩

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