Injection moulding in plastics technology

The injection moulding machine is a key element of many production lines and often plays an interacting role with different upstream and downstream production steps. In close cooperation with our partners from research and industry, the members of this research area are tasked with mastering the ever-mounting challenges concerning the machines, peripherals and connectivity.

We carry out research in the field of injection moulding with the focus on the following aspects:

  • Process simulation
  • Precision injection moulding and process control
  • Mould technology and design
  • Process technology and development
  • Special injection moulding processes and process combinations

To carry out our research projects, we can call on modern injection moulding machines with a clamping force range of between 60 t and 240 t. The available moulds comprises a wide variety of different types, ranging from simple geometries for analytical tests and standardised sample geometries to complex geometries similar to those used in practical application. For mould design and process simulation, we have access to state-of-the-art CAD/CAM/CAE tools.

Ongoing research projects in the field in injection moulding

Digitalisation of injection moulding production

  • Use of artificial neuronal networks for the rapid setting-up and optimisation of injection moulding processes
  • Networking of simulation and process for optimisation of the injection moulding process

Innovative process control

  • Process control by means of servo-electrically driven hot runner needles
  • Cross-phase regulation of the injection moulding process

Controlled cooling for high-precision parts

  • Algorithms for the automatic design of a temperature control layout for injection moulding tools
  • Self-optimising process control with highly-segmented mould temperature control

Thermoplastic foam injection moulding for thin-walled and ultra-small parts

  • Mini-ProFoam: Optimisation of the processing temperature of absorbable plastics
  • Increasing the flow properties for thin-walled parts in the packaging segment

Process development for high-precision plastic optics

  • Qualification of combined primary and secondary optics for LEDs of liquid silicone rubbers
  • Development and testing of a design routine for the upgrading of plastic lenses for laser applications (KOptLas)

Integrated metal/plastic injection moulding (IMKS)

  • Analysis of the contacting of metal inserts
  • Highly integrated injection moulding production cell for the manufacture of LED light sources

Processing of special materials

  • Development of a flame-retardant system for expanded cellulose acetate
  • Development of a flame-retardant PLA compound for technical applications
  • Direct screwing together of thermoplastic mouldings

Malte Röbig, M.Sc.

Head of department Injection Moulding +49 241 80-93827 malte.roebig@ikv.rwth-aachen.de

We develop solutions for the plastics industry

In bilateral projects or joint projects, we work on a wide variety of present-day problems together with industry partners. As our partners, they can take advantage of our expertise in the fields of process simulation and optimisation, mould design, sampling of materials and finished parts and our experience with the many different special injection moulding processes.

Together with our partners from industry

- we design the part to suit the process;
- develop or refine a manufacturing process;
- identify materials for special processes (foam injection moulding, fluid injection technique etc.);
- optimise current processes (process instrumentation and control, plant organisation etc.);
- provide support in the first run of an innovative process.

We are research partners for various segments of industry:

  • Automotive and vehicle supplier industries
  • Machinery manufacture
  • Cosmetics industry
  • White and brown goods
  • Sports and medical technology

Frequently asked questions

Cooperation projects with our partners from industry often deal with several of the following subjects, for which we draw up customised solutions that can be directly implemented:

  • Part optimisation and design in line with the process
  • Study of the influence of the process on the properties of the part
  • Verification of the processability of new materials in special injection moulding processes
  • New and further development in special injection moulding processes, especially in
    • thermoplastic foam injection moulding
    • fluid injection technique
    • multi-component technology
  • Design of the injection moulding process and its special versions
  • Rheological, thermal and mechanical mould design with the help of a wide variety of software solutions
  • Demonstrator development and production
  • Production of standardised specimens
  • Sampling of newly developed materials

Insights into our research