Exploring Plastics Extrusion

Shropshire, UK


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Course Dates

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  • 18-19 September 2024

Course overview

This course will help you better understand the whole extrusion process, helping you to optimize your processes, troubleshoot and avoid problems. 
Please note: This course will concentrate on the single screw extrusion  process, both within the extruder and downstream. Areas such as compounding (single and twin screw) rheology, pipe extrusion, film, sheet, cable and PVC profiles will be addressed in short modules.

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Gain CPD credits

Smithers is an IOM3 Quality Assured training provider and our courses are approved towards professional development.

Learning outcomes

  • Wider understanding of extrusion processes
  • Recognise the different extrusion techniques
  • Identify the most common faults to be found in extrusion
  • Quicker resolution of process problems
  • Improved efficiency of production
  • Design improved laboratory (R&D) projects with a view to scaling up to production
  • Understand why different polymers perform differently during extrusion
  • Make informed choices when purchasing equipment
  • Understand how to achieve better quality end product
  • Improved communications with suppliers and customer companies

Course content

  • The Basic Extrusion Process: What are we trying to achieve?  Densification, Mixing, Compounding, Reinforcement, Reactive Processing, or the production of a particular shape.
  • Extrusion Theory: Feeding, Melting, and Pumping processes in single and twin screw machines, and the energy balance of the process.
  • Rheology: Its influence on the extrusion process.
  • Extrusion Design: Aspects of design, choice and purchase of equipment.
  • Twin Screw Extrusion: Different types of twin screw, their uses and compounding optimisation
  • Mixing: Various mixing techniques exist, add on mixing heads, barrier screws and modular kneading elements.
  • Scale-up: Sizing of a machine from laboratory trials, scale-up, and choice of equipment.
  • Downstream: Compound, pipe, film, sheet, cable sheathing, profiles.
  • Trouble shooting: Fault finding, practical solutions to common problems, i.e. probable causes of surging, melt fracture, etc., difficulties encountered in handling rework
  • Materials, feeding systems etc.

Who will benefit?

  • Process/production engineers
  • Technical managers
  • Personnel involved in quality control
  • Customer/technical services
  • Those responsible for selling or purchasing extrusion equipment

Presenter information

  • Jon Lea, B.Eng.

What our delegates say

"Very helpful and highly knowledgeable"
Gerard Eaton (Hozelock Ltd)

"A very useful guide to how extrusion machines work"
Mike Baillon (Stretch Polytech)

Questions and queries

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Exploring Plastics Extrusion

Length 2 days