Posted in | Plastics and Polymers

Rhodia Provides Clients with an Even Greater Comprtitive Edge

Rhodia has announced that it is offering its customers three new functionalities which have been added to its technology for predicting the mechanical behavior of filled polymers, MMI Confident Design.

For Rhodia, giving its customers an ever greater competitive edge has been the driving force behind the development of its MMI Confident Design technology.

A manufacturer that develops a part made of polyamide-based short fiber composites in partnership with Rhodia can benefit from the simulation potential of MMI Confident Design. With this technology, which is capable of precisely calculating the mechanical properties of fiber reinforced polymers, including PA6.6, Rhodia has made a firm commitment to ensuring simulation of engineering plastics as predictive as that of steel.

This ability to accurately describe the behavior of short fiber composites results from combining e-Xstream Engineering's DIGIMAT software application (www.e-Xstream.com) and complex laws of behavior which Rhodia has developed with the help of both in-house and external experts.

In late November 2009, Rhodia introduced three initial functionalities that provide information on behaviors under stress: elasticity, elasto-plasticity and elasto-viscoplasticity related to the speed of deformation. Other more complex functionalities will follow.

"By improving our knowledge of discontinuous reinforced composites, Rhodia is improving and accelerating part design. Numerous sectors can more confidently consider replacing metal in a structural part with polyamide in order to reduce its weight and production costs," said Olivier Moulinjeune, Simulation Expert.

The initial applications are geared toward the automotive industry with engine mount, seat, pedal and other structural parts, as well as other markets such as those for snowboard bindings, circuit breakers, etc.

Thanks to its MMI Confident Design technology, Rhodia is a development partner that is capable of becoming involved and creating value at each stage of the design process, from the idea right up to the part. If the customer does not have the DIGIMAT application, Rhodia takes care of the entire development; otherwise, Rhodia makes the laws of behavior of the various materials available to it during the project.

DIGIMAT, developed by e-Xstream Engineering, is a multi-scale modeling software platform that provides the ability to calculate the behavior of reinforced engineering plastic at each point of a part by integrating the properties of the matrix and fibers, as well as their orientation, in a static or impact condition.

To model the behaviors, Rhodia went far beyond gross test results, making use of the best available resources: analysis of the microstructures in collaboration with the synchrotron facility in Grenoble; advanced mechanical characterizations made at high speed; videometric control of deformations, etc.

By offering these brand new functionalities, Rhodia has reasserted its role as a specialist in modeling of the mechanical properties of engineering plastics.

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