Visualization of compression molding.
Compression molding is said to be a common process in manufacturing complex composite components for industrial applications. Sheet molding compound (SMC), glass mat thermoplastic (GMT) and pre-impregnated (pre-preg) are the most common compression molding processes used in composite component manufacturing. However, since the Theological properties of composite materials have both solid and fluid behaviors, simulation is said to become a challenge. Commercial software is designed to calculate either fluid behavior or structure deformation, and those calculations are derived from different equations.
SMC, formed using the compression molding process, can now be analyzed by integrated numerical simulation. The integration method, involving both computational structural mechanics and computational fluid dynamics, is used to predict both the charge's deformation and flow behavior of SMC, respectively.
To simulate the process, LS-Dyna, commercially available FEA software, integrated with Moldex3D can be applied. The initial charge's shape, temperature, stress tensor and anisotropic material property are first computed by LS-Dyna; then, carrying those physical properties, the deformed charge is exported to Moldex3D to continue the compression molding analysis. The analysis results of flow behavior and warpage show that the proposed integration method can successfully simulate the complex behaviors of SMC in compression molding. (CoreTech System Co., Ltd.)