In-line optical techniques to characterize the polymer extrusion

Authors

  • A.M. da Cunha Santos,

    1. Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciência e Engenharia de Materiais, PPG-CEM, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, UFSCar, Brazil
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  • C.A. Cáceres,

    1. Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciência e Engenharia de Materiais, PPG-CEM, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, UFSCar, Brazil
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  • L.S. Calixto,

    1. Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais, DEMa, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, Brazil
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  • L. Zborowski,

    1. Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciência e Engenharia de Materiais, PPG-CEM, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, UFSCar, Brazil
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  • S.V. Canevarolo

    Corresponding author
    1. Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais, DEMa, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, Brazil
    • Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais, DEMa, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, UFSCar, Rod. Washington Luís, km 235, 13565-905, Brazil. E-mail: caneva@ufscar.br

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Abstract

In the past 15 years our research group has been creating new optical devices to characterize in real time the extrusion process. These detectors are made of a slit-die fitted at the extruder exit from where the molten polymer flows, with a pair of transparent windows that allows a light beam to pass orthogonally through the molten flow. Following the reduction of the transmitted light intensity one is able to quantify the turbidity, which is a function of the type, concentration and particle size and shape of the second phase present in the flow. By evaluating the scattering pattern of a laser beam (LALLS) it is possible to get information upon the morphology of the molten polymeric system in real time during the extrusion. With the interposition of a pair of crossed polarizers in the optical beam, rheo-polarimetry, it is possible to evaluate quantitatively the flow birefringence, which is a function of the degree of the polymer matrix orientation. POLYM. ENG. SCI., 54:386–395, 2014. © 2013 Society of Plastics Engineers

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