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HOT RUNNERS | MOULDS


protrusion, timing and sequence. Using these variables ten multi-step opening and closing profiles for each valve pin can be created which gives users the flexibility necessary to enhance moulded part quality and balance when using ImFlux. SeVG+ is claimed to be ideal for a wide range of applications, such as large part production and family moulds including automotive applications. Moulding large parts with traditional sequential injection methods can lead to several visual surface defects including pressure lines, hesitation marks and sink marks. These surface defects are caused by uncontrolled resin flow which results in an abrupt spike in cavity pressure during the filling stage. SeVG+ helps prevent these defects by regulating the release of melt pressure into the cavity. The precision and repeatability of the SeVG+ servos helps stabilise moulding processes. HRSflow has developed its Flex- Flow technology of servo-electric driven valve gates for tailored hot runner solutions for demanding technical parts for the automotive industry and other applications including thin-walled laptop housing and an ultra-light tool box. The company says that FlexFlow technol- ogy has the ability to individually control the pressures and flow veloci- ties at each gate, making an optimal solution for large and small applica- tions, even with thermoplastics that are difficult to process. In order to meet Industry 4.0 requirements for integration, the company has introduced the op- tion of using a touchscreen of an injection mould- ing machine to control FlexFlow settings. For lightweight construction and Class A surface


applications for the automotive industry, HRSflow has developed and optimised a hot runner system for the production of an engine cover using FlexFlow One technology, in collaboration with tool specialist GK Concept and injection moulding machine manufacturer Yizumi. This servo-electric valve gate solution, which is programmed using an external Smart Interface and therefore requires no additional control unit, is claimed to combine maximum precision with a broad process window and cost efficiency. In the production of the large-sized component, an aluminium foil only 0.2 mm thick is first inserted into the mould and punched into shape during the closing process. Subsequently, the foil is thermoformed during overmoulding with a glass fibre-reinforced polyam- ide using a FlexFlow hot runner system and


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physical foaming technology. During this back injection phase, in-mould graining (IMG) takes place, in which the fine texture of the mould is transferred both to the foil and to the polymer surface. The resulting part combines light weight with high dimensional stability, low warpage and a premium surface without visible weld lines. A FlexFlow five-nozzle hot runner system has also been used for the production of an automotive spoiler made from a polypropylene from A. Schulman, filled with 3M’s hollow micro glass spheres, which enables weight savings of up to 15% compared to the unfilled version. Due to FlexFlow technology, which ensures a more homogeneous pressure distribution in the cavity, the glass microsphere survival ratio is increased with even better distribution. The result is a lightweight component with no visible weld lines that meets the highest requirements for mechanical properties and surface quality. Another lightweight automotive


application is a centre armrest that is manufactured in a multi-stage process. Development partners in this project were KraussMaffei and the US toolmaker ProperTooling. The load-bearing structure of the centre armrest was created with the aid of the FiberForm process developed by KraussMaffei in which a thin-wall,


fibre-reinforced composite sheet is heated, inserted into the mould and thermoformed. The two subsequent injection moulding processes are carried out according to the principle of the swivel-platen technique simultaneously in two opposite parts of the same mould. In one step, the carrier is first encapsulated with polypropylene. This results in the near-final geometry of the part,


Left: The


Mold-Masters TempMaster Series hot runner controller has been upgraded


Below: An ultra-light centre armrest for automotive interiors produced using servo-electric programmable FlexFlow hot runner systems from HRSflow


November/December 2018 | INJECTION WORLD 35


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