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Roctool’s H&C Tech. Majorly Effects Surface Quality of ELIX Polymers’ ABS/PC Blend

Published on 2018-02-19. Author : SpecialChem

ELIX Polymers said important improvements to surface finish are being made by using Roctool’s Heat and Cool technology to mold its ELIX Ultra HH4115HI ABS/polycarbonate blend. The company recently completed a series of tests using this technology, carried out in line with its strategy of providing tailor-made solutions and service to companies processing its specialist materials.

Heat and Cool technology for ABS/PC Blend Characterization


José Pedro Abad, business Development Manager Automotive, said:
“We are operating in a highly competitive market, so it is important for us to go the extra mile to demonstrate to our customers how they can get the most out of our materials. We wanted to quantify the possible improvements – in terms of part aesthetics and also processing performance – using Heat and Cool technology. We chose to use Roctool induction heating technology to characterize our innovative ABS/PC blend ELIX Ultra HH4115HI, which is a leader of Heat and Cool technology (H&C), in order to expand the already wide range of applications.”

The graph shows a flow length for 1 mm and 1.5 mm thicknesses at two different temperatures (70°C and 180°C). This graph demonstrates that using Roctool technology can reduce the thickness of your injected part from 1.5 mm to 1 mm (as can be seen by the red circle above).
The graph shows a flow length for 1 mm and 1.5 mm thicknesses at two different temperatures
(70°C and 180°C).
This graph demonstrates that using Roctool technology can reduce the thickness of your injected part from 1.5 mm to 1 mm
(as can be seen by the red circle above).

Developing HD Plastics™ Database


Mathieu Boulanger, Roctool CEO, commented:
“The material characterization is part of Roctool’s ongoing effort to further develop its High Definition Plastics™ material database which is designed to help OEM’s to achieve exceptional part quality and increased performance. Roctool’s H&C can have significant effects on surface quality; it also helps to eliminate evidence of weld lines and flow marks. Mold cavity surface is heated very quickly up to temperatures that can exceed 200°C just before injection. The surface is then cooled quickly, to achieve the necessary demolding temperature to minimize any increase in total cycle time.”

Effects of Heating Above Glass Transition Temperature


  • By heating the mold temperature above the glass transition temperature, excellent replication of the cavity surface is obtained – even surfaces that have the finest laser-made grain structures – as well as an elimination of weld lines and sink marks. 
  • It therefore reduces or even eliminates the need for painting or in-mold decoration. 
  • Furthermore, shear stress in the melt is reduced which can have an important effect on the mechanical properties of the part and thinner walls.

Surface Characterization


To characterize the innovative ABS/PC blend ELIX Ultra HH4115HI under H&C conditions and according to the HD Plastics™ process, Roctool characterized the surface replication following three types of surface structures: Chemical grain, EDM grain and laser grain as well as improvements in gloss and color. Besides surface replication, flow length studies have been also carried out.

José Pedro Abad said:
“HD Plastics™ characterization highlights the improvement made by using Roctool technology with global surface quality improved by the level of gloss and the black intensity. Indeed, Roctool’s technology allows a reduction of the color lightness and we obtain a ‘piano black’ part with a perfect surface finish.”

In addition, replication of the textured surface was improved by over 50%, and there were significant improvements for each type of surface structure, especially with low roughness. Last HD Plastics™ characterizations are based on the study of the flow using the Spiral mold for thicknesses of 1 and 1,5mm. This study shows strong improvement using Roctool technology versus conventional technology, in terms of pressure drop reduction which is up to 60% and flow length up to 100%.

Dynamic mold heating has a major effect on the surface quality of a novel ABS/PC blend: ELIX Polymers
Dynamic mold heating has a major effect on the surface quality
of a novel ABS/PC blend: ELIX Polymers

Dr Feigenblum, Roctool CTO, explained:
“ELIX Ultra HH4115HI ABS/PC is now included in the HD Plastics™ material database according to the great results demonstrated by the characterization. The outstanding properties of this material will help us select ELIX Ultra HH4115HI ABS/PC as an excellent candidate for upcoming projects with OEM’s.”

ELIX Ultra HH4115HI ABS/PC Blend


  • ELIX Ultra HH4115HI ABS/PC, which was introduced just over a year ago, has several advantages over a PC/ABS (which contains less ABS and more polycarbonate). 
  • It is for example around 5% less dense, it has lower emissions and odor, a higher flow rate, and higher impact strength. 
  • It is suitable for crash-relevant parts such as interior trim and parts that may be subject to knee or head impacts, as well as for exterior applications such as pillar covers and other painted side moldings. 

As with other grades from ELIX Polymers, pre-colored material in OEM colors is possible, as are tailor-made solutions with special additive packages for very demanding part requirements.


Source: ELIX Polymers
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