BLOW MOLDING: IR Gauge Measures Parison Thickness During Blow Molding

Helps fine-tune setup within minutes.

A bottle blow molder wanted to understand better the thickness profile of the extruded parison during the molding process. Due to cycling mechanical machinery within a 24-in. window around the parison, a standard probe with a standoff maximum of 2 in. could not be used while the machine was running. Lumetrics, Rochester, N.Y., designed a custom infrared probe with a standoff distance of more than 2 ft so it could measure wall thickness of discrete areas of the parison just prior to mold closing. This allowed the customer to optimize the parison extrusion process. Lumetrics’ OptiGauge uses infrared interferometry to measure absolute thickness of clear or translucent plastics. The gauge allows the molder to fine-tune the setup in a matter of minutes vs. the previous hour or more.