identiPol QA2

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Description

What is it?
The QA2 is designed to provide unskilled polymer manufacturing and processing staff with a simple tool to identify and assess the quality of mouldable thermoplastics. The system has been specifically designed to provide a quick assessment of incoming material and its suitability for use on the production line. This is achieved by the automated comparison of new batches of material against known good batches, which have previously been tested.

The QA2 is a 2nd generation system offering improved ease-of- use, enhanced capabilities and increased productivity, within a compact portable unit. This intelligent system self-optimises test conditions leaving the operator with only supplier, material and batch information to enter into the software prior to running a test. Built-in diagnostics ensure that the sample is always run under optimum conditions, leaving the operator to get on with other work during the short (around 15 minutes) test time.

What does it do?

There are three ways in which the QA2 system can be used:

  • Identification
    Identifies the type of plastic material the sample is made of from a library of common thermoplastics. This mode allows you to simply identify a material as LDPE, HDPE PP, PA6 PA66 etc.
  • Confirmation
    Confirms that the sample is similar enough to previous tests on known good material so that it may be used on the production line with confidence, and assures the continued quality of processed product. A detailed certificate of conformance is produced for the customer.
  • Comparison
    Compares two grades of material for equivalence and reports on their similarity. The Comparison mode can be used to compare a homopolymer against a copolymer as well as comparing different manufacturers or suppliers.
How does it work?

Test samples are first moulded within the QA2 to produce a consistent sample for measurement. The test sample is then heated up whilst several thermal properties are measured by the system – these properties provide a fingerprint of the material which is then stored for comparison. The fingerprint is then automatically compared to previous results and a QIS™ value is calculated which indicates the similarity of the test sample to known stored results (called a reference set).

The QIS™ value is a unique approach developed by Lacerta Technology and The University of Bristol to assess the similarities between test results on different samples. The QIS™ value simply provides an objective assessment and removes operator error in assessing if the most recent test on a sample of material just delivered is comparable and equivalent to earlier deliveries of batches of the same material. The use of the QIS™ value provides a simple, no-quibble, “Go/No Go” as to whether the material is suitable to use on the production line.

Additional information

Sample size

20-30mg (one or two plastic
granules, plastic film, or a
piece from a moulded part)

Temperature range

Ambient to 350°C

Heating rate

10-100°C/min

Automatic output

Glass Transition Tg (°C)
Melting Point Tm (°C)
End Point (°C)

Identification

Polymer Type

Confirmation

QIS value of similarity

Comparison

QIS value of similarity

Additional output

Complex thermo-mechanical
property data:
• Tan delta
• Stiffness (N/m)
• Delta T (ΔT, °C)
• Moulding displacement (mm)

Printed outputs

Batch summary report
QIS test results report
Sample identification
Certificate of confirmation

Optional accessories

Melt Flow Indication (MFi)
Sample viewing camera system