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Keywords:

  • parallel computing;
  • three-dimensional;
  • finite volume method;
  • mold filling;
  • injection molding

Abstract

This paper describes the development of a parallel three-dimensional unstructured non-isothermal flow solver for the simulation of the injection molding process. The numerical model accounts for multiphase flow in which the melt and air regions are considered to be a continuous incompressible fluid with distinct physical properties. This aspect avoids the complex reconstruction of the interface. A collocated finite volume method is employed, which can switch between first- and second-order accuracy in both space and time. The pressure implicit with splitting of operators algorithm is used to compute the transient flow variables and couple velocity and pressure. The temperature equation is solved using a transport equation with convection and diffusion terms. An upwind differencing scheme is used for the discretization of the convection term to enforce a bounded solution. In order to capture the sharp interface, a bounded compressive high-resolution scheme is employed. Parallelization of the code is achieved using the PETSc framework and a single program multiple data message passing model. Predicted numerical solutions for several example problems are considered. The first case validates the solution algorithm for moderate Reynolds number flows using a structured mesh. The second case employs an unstructured hybrid mesh showing the capability of the solver to describe highly viscous flows closer to realistic injection molding conditions. The final case presents the non-isothermal filling of a thick cavity using three mesh sizes and up to 80 processors to assess parallel performance. The proposed algorithm is shown to have good accuracy and scalability. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.