Injection overmolding process is a high versatile process that permits, when used in combination with fiber reinforced thermoplastic composites, the obtaining of high mechanical properties structures with complex geometries in short time cycles.
The maximum flow length is a parameter that reflects the success of filling in a polymer injection molding process. Geometry of the part, rheological properties of the polymer and process parameters, such as injection pressure and temperature, are involved on the value of this parameter and therefore on the viability of a certain configuration.
For injection molding manufacturing, the understanding of the relation between maximum flow length and main geometrical parameters of the molded part is fundamental to approach the product design, which is conditioned severely by processing capabilities.
In this work, the maximum flow length is obtained for different geometries of an overmolded rectangular stiffener grid of carbon fiber filled polyether eter ketone (CF-PEEK) using the software Moldflow© Adviser© for calculations. Value of maximum flow length is provided as a function of cross section aspect ratio for gate diameters between 0.8 mm and 1.4 mm and cross section areas from 10 to 50 mm2. An exponential decrement of maximum flow length has been observed with the increment of aspect ratio of the cross section as well as a linear increment with the increment of cross section area. Gate diameter variation is slightly related with maximum flow length for the simulated values. These results provide a support tool for geometry sizing in overmolded rectangular grid parts at preliminary design stages.