This course approaches plastic material selection from a systematic perspective. Emphasis is placed on understanding the material’s chemical structure and its influence on the material’s properties.
The course begins by outlining differences in structure and performance of semi-crystalline and amorphous materials, including the addition of fillers and other functional additives. Next, the course focuses on Molecular Weight and its impact on material performance and the injection molding process.
Additionally, students will learn how the polymer chemistry influences long-term performance.
The course then teaches how material performance changes at elevated temperatures, and also issues related to environmental stress cracking.
Finally, the course concludes by bringing it all together with several case studies focused on proper material selection.
- Uses of thermosets vs. thermoplastics
- Performance differences of amorphous vs. semi-crystalline materials
- Factors that affect crystallinity and performance
- Understanding Tg and Tm
- Shrinkage and warpage issues
- Material performance at elevated temperatures (DMA curves)
- Use of polymer blends
- Molecular weight’s role in material performance
- Measuring molecular weight
- Melt Flow Index and Intrinsic Viscosity
- Polar and non-polar materials
- Nylon’s nomenclature
- Defining application requirements
- Issues with material datasheets
- Short and long term material behaviors
- Viscoelastic properties of plastic materials
- Material test methods
- Physical aging
- Environmental stress cracking
- Creep and fatigue resistance
- Understanding stress vs. strain curves
- All course materials, including:
- Course book
- Calculators, pens, pencils, etc…
- Daily breakfast and lunch
- Certificate of Attendance
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