- Conference date: 30–31 July 2013
- Location: Zlin, Czech Republic
Characterization of polymer melts in elongational flow is typically performed at constant elongational rate or rarely at constant tensile stress conditions. One of the disadvantages of these deformation modes is that they are hampered by the onset of “necking” instabilities according to the Considère criterion. Experiments at constant tensile force have been performed even more rarely, in spite of the fact that this deformation mode is free from necking instabilities and is of considerable industrial relevance as it is the correct analogue of steady fiber spinning. It is the objective of the present contribution to present for the first time a full experimental characterization of a long-chain branched polyethylene melt in elongational flow. Experiments were performed at constant elongation rate, constant tensile stress and constant tensile force by use of a Sentmanat Extensional Rheometer (SER) in combination with an Anton Paar MCR301 rotational rheometer. The accessible experimental window and experimental limitations are discussed. The experimental data are modelled by using the Wagner I model. Predictions of the steady-start elongational viscosity in constant strain rate and creep experiments are found to be identical, albeit only by extrapolation of the experimental data to Hencky strains of the order of 6. For constant stress experiments, a minimum in the strain rate and a corresponding maximum in the elongational viscosity is found at a Hencky strain of the order of 3, which, although larger than the steady-state value, follows roughly the general trend of the steady-state elongational viscosity. The constitutive analysis also reveals that constant tensile force experiments indicate a larger strain hardening potential than seen in constant elongation rate or constant tensile stress experiments. This may be indicative of the effect of necking under constant elongation rate or constant tensile stress conditions according to the Considère criterion.
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