Residual stress distribution in injection molded starch/synthetic polymer blends was evaluated using the layer removal technique. The synthetic polymers in the blend were either polybutylene succinate (PBS) or polycaprolactone (PCL). The starch content ranged from 0 to 70% by weight in the PBS blend and was held constant at 70% in the PCL blend. The effects of various molding conditions, aging and starch content were investigated. The residual stress profiles were found to be parabolic in nature with surface compressive stresses and interior tensile stresses. Increasing the injection pressure and mold temperature decreased the tensile stresses but had no significant effect on the surface compressive stresses. Decreasing the packing pressure produced a significant decrease in the magnitude of residual stresses. Varying melt temperature and packing time did not significantly affect the residual stress distribution for the range of values investigated. The residual stresses relaxed with time, decreasing over a period of 57 days. The magnitude of residual stresses increased as the starch content in the PBS blends was varied from 0 to 70%. Density gradient measurements were made in a 70% starch/PBS blend. The density was found to be higher in the interior than at the surface with a steep gradient close to the surface. Varying the molding conditions had a complex effect on the average density and the density distribution.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This research was funded by the National Science Foundation under Design, Manufacturing and Industrial Innovation award number 9700126. The authors would like to thank Professors Kim Stelson and Vaughan Voller for helpful discussions.
- Residual stress distribution
- Starch content
- Starch/synthetic polymer blends