Busting the Myths of Conformal Cooling

Guest blogger Bob Beard discusses how conformal cooling is opening up new ways of doing things with new tools to solve problems, but there are several myths that need to be examined to fully understand its potential. Here he examines one such myth.


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Conformal cooling is opening up new ways of doing things with new tools to solve problems.  As cooling lines get smaller and closer to the core and cavity wall, and take a torturous path through the mold, the hydraulic resistance is increasing for each channel. There is a myth, at the floor level, that if the main water inlet to the mold is connected to say a 12-port manifold, that the manifold splits the water into 12 equal parts. This is not true. Hydraulic resistance determines that. The higher the hydraulic resistance is in each channel, the less water that goes into the channel.

In a conformal mold, it is important to measure the flow rate of each cooling line and calculate the Reynolds number to see that it is above 5000 for turbulent flow. This can be done by installing a flow meter with a metering valve on each cooling line on the return manifold so that each cooling line can be manually balanced.

If we continue to do what we have always done, we deserve to get what we’ve always gotten.

For more on the myths of conformal cooling, check out an upcoming new FastTrack training program on September 4th and 5th, near Toledo, OH, sponsored by Plastic Technologies, Inc. (PTI),  which will feature two modules— Conformal Cooling for Injection Molding (September 4th) and Medical Plastics Design and Processing (September 5th)

Conformal Cooling Seminar Outline
1.) Understanding heat management
2.) How resin selection affects heat management.
How resins can be modified to cycle faster.
3.) Choosing the right mold metal.
4.) Understanding how Fluid Dynamics impacts Dynamic Heat Transfer.
5.) Alternative cooling technologies to be used with conformal cooling.
6.) Conforming Cooling Technologies, including a European technology
presentation not seen in North America.
7.) Examples why Moldflow and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) are important,
if not necessary, tools for designing conformal cooling channels