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Predicting Pattern Tooling and Casting Dimensions for Investment Casting, Phase II

Description: The investment casting process allows the production of complex-shape parts and close dimensional tolerances. One of the most important phases in the investment casting process is the design of the pattern die. Pattern dies are used to create wax patterns by injecting wax into dies. The first part of the project involved preparation of reports on the state of the art at that time for all the areas under consideration (die-wax, wax-shell, and shell-alloy). The primary R&D focus during Phase I was on the wax material since the least was known about it. The main R&D accomplishments during this phase were determination of procedures for obtaining the thermal conductivity and viscoelastic properties of an unfilled wax and validating those procedures. Phase II focused on die-wax and shell-alloy systems. A wax material model was developed based on results obtained during the previous R&D phase, and a die-wax model was successfully incorporated into and used in commercial computer programs. Current computer simulation programs have complementary features. A viscoelastic module was available in ABAQUS but unavailable in ProCAST, while the mold-filling module was available in ProCAST but unavailable in ABAQUS. Thus, the numerical simulation results were only in good qualitative agreement with experimental results, the predicted shrinkage factors being approximately 2.5 times larger than those measured. Significant progress was made, and results showed that the testing and modeling of wax material had great potential for industrial applications. Additional R&D focus was placed on one shell-alloy system. The fused-silica shell mold and A356 aluminum alloy were considered. The experimental part of the program was conducted at ORNL and commercial foundries, where wax patterns were injected, molds were invested, and alloys were poured. It was very important to obtain accurate temperature data from actual castings, and significant effort was made to obtain temperature profiles in ...
Date: September 30, 2005
Creator: Cannell, Nick & Sabau, Adrian S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department