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3/11/2015 | 2 MINUTE READ

Scientific Injection Molding Goes Mobile With New App

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Scientific Injection Molding gets the Android and iOS app treatment from an industry consultant who already created desktop software for the molding process.

On the same day in 1995 that he started a new job, Suhas Kulkarni was formally introduced to the concept of Scientific Molding at a seminar hosted by Hewlett Packard and the former GE Plastics (now SABIC). A 1992 graduate of UMass Lowell’s plastics engineering program who began work as an injection molding process engineer in 1993, Kulkarni remembers reading about the concept prior to the seminar but not practicing it. That would soon change.

 

“Once I started implementing the techniques,” Kulkarni says, “I realized their value. I also realized that there was a lot which was not understood about those techniques and so I started to come up with additions to what I had learned.”

 

Eventually those deeper understandings and additions to the core guidelines became a full-fledged desktop software for Scientific Molding and Design of Experiments called Nautilus, as Kulkarni founded FIMMTECH (Frontier Injection Molding and Materials Technologies, San Diego, Calif.) in 2004. FIMMTECH’s stated goal: to help develop and standardize validation procedures, provide training and help processors improve the overall efficiency of their molding operations (the company recently opened a new training center replete with a molding machine and the company will be in Orlando for NPE2015).

 

As desktop computers increasingly give way to tablets and mobile phones and traditional software transitions to apps, the continued evolution of Kulkarni’s original program was inevitable. “As users have started moving to mobile platforms, it was only a matter of time and a logical next step to build the app,” Kulkarni says.

 

That app, called Scientific Molding, is available for Android and iOS systems. It features the ability to generate the six scientific molding graphs (viscosity study, cavity balance study, pressure drop study, cosmetic process window, gate seal study, and cooling study), and it can also perform molding calculations, including tonnage, estimated shot size, residence time, percent shot size used, hopper dryer sizes, water flow tables and calculations of process parameters on a new machine.

 

Built in “Learning Centers” cover:

 

  • Scientific Molding and Scientific Processing
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Basics of Injection Molding
  • Injection Molding Parameters
  • 6-Step Study (the Scientific Molding Studies)
  • Design of Experiments
  • Molding Defects and their Solutions

 

“Having these tools on a mobile device, such as a phone, is invaluable since now molders do not need to carry their laptops or have sheets of papers,” Kulkarni says. “They can perform their studies, or look up information, on a device that they typically always have in their pockets – their phones.”

 

Kulkarni says the initial feedback for the app has been “overwhelming and very positive.” The Android version was released first, followed soon after by an iOS edition for Apple users. Kulkarni says there will be updates as features are added, with a “final goal” of integrating the data from the desktop version to the mobile platform.

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