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Modeling reaction kinetics of rigid polyurethane foaming process



A theoretical model was developed to simulate the polyurethane foaming process for a rigid foam. In the model, multiple ordinary differential equations were solved by MATLAB and the model was able to predict temperature profiles by inputting foam recipe information. This initial study on foam modeling focusses on reaction kinetic parameters that were fitted to experimental temperature data as a function of time. The modeling was able to accurately model temperature profiles of single-polyol polyurethane formulations and was able to accurately predict temperature profiles of mixtures based on pure component kinetic parameters. A primary goal of this work is to expedite the ability to develop new foam formulations by simulation—especially for incorporation of new bio-based polyols into formulations. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 130: 1131-1138, 2013