Q
What's the working principle of Extrusion machine
A
Plastic material in the form of pellets or granules is gravity fed from a top mounted hopper into the barrel. Additives such as colorants and ultraviolet inhibitors (liquid or pellet form) can be mixed in the hopper. The plastic material enters through the feed throat and comes into contact with the rotating screw. The rotating screw pushes the plastic beads forward into the barrel. The barrel is heated using the heating elements up to the melting temperature of the plastic. The heating elements are used in such ways that gradually increase the temperature of the barrel from the rear to the front.
There are three possible zones in a rotating screw i.e. feed zone, melting zone, and metering zone. In the feed zone, the plastic beads melt gradually as they are pushed through the barrel.
The plastic material is completely melted in the melting zone. A thermostat is used to maintain the inside temperature of the barrel. The overheating of plastics should be minimized which may cause degradation in the material properties. A cooling fan or water cooling system is used to maintain the temperature of the barrel during the process.
At the front of the barrel, the molten plastic leaves the screw and travels through a screen pack to remove any contaminants in the molten plastic. The screens are reinforced by a breaker plate.
The breaker plate assembly also serves to create back pressure in the barrel. The back pressure gives uniform melting and proper mixing of the molten plastic material into the barrel. After passing through the breaker plate, molten plastic enters into die. The die gives the desired shape of plastic product. An uneven flow of molten plastic would produce unwanted stresses in the plastic product. These stresses can cause warping after solidification of molten plastic. Plastics are very good thermal insulators and therefore it is very difficult to cool quickly. The plastic product is cooled by pulling through a set of cooling rolls.

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