Across industries and materials, we’ve found that maintaining temperature with materials during the extrusion process has a direct impact on the bottom line. The problem is that regular screw extrusion systems heat or cool the barrel from one end to the other, so there is always a temperature gradient, even across a ‘controlled’ temperature zone. These temperature gradients can reduce energy efficiency, slow process time, even lead to losses from barrel leakage.
Extrusion process temperature control is crucial for many materials, especially those dealing with sensitive ingredients in the food and pharmaceutical industries. For some, accurate cooling is necessary to ensure process temperatures never exceed certain maximum values. Other customer applications require extruder barrels to be more responsive when heating or cooling, quickly achieving optimal process temperatures whilst retaining accurate thermal control. All require optimization of energy usage in their extrusion processes.
A better way to achieve temperature control during extrusion
Diamond America engineers brainstormed new ideas for cold feed extruder barrel design, with the aim of achieving greater thermal stability and control. Using computer simulations, various options were explored, specifically looking at speed of reaction to thermal changes and streamlining of the flow.
One solution far outstripped the alternatives, achieving better temperature uniformity, more quickly and continuously, without any dead spots along the barrel. Using Serpentine Flow principles, a circuit-type flow is obtained in the barrel liner, by passing the coolant through many narrow channels along the length of the barrel. Continuous flow means that barrel construction is less susceptible to leaks, allowing no possibility of stagnant flow whilst creating even temperatures across the section. This novel, intuitive method, which can be used with any extrudate, was unveiled at the Ceramics Show in Cleveland, Ohio on April 26th, 2017 at The International Exposition Center, better known as the I-X Center.
Four bottom-line benefits of strict thermal control
Diamond America’s Serpentine Flow extruder barrel design for fast, effective heating or cooling provides the solution for materials that require strict thermal control with the major benefits of:
- Greater energy efficiency when heating or cooling
- Better consistency in temperature control
- Reduced losses from barrel leakage
- Faster process times
Call us at 330-535-3330 ask us now how this Diamond America innovation can help your custom extrusion application.