PIQ2 srl

Via Branze, 45, 25123 Brescia
Telephone +39 030 6595058
Fax +39 030 6595059

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Our range of products

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  • 24  Information processing
  • 24.02  Simulation of casting processes

Simulation of casting processes

Our products

Product category: Simulation of casting processes

Castle Mind

Castle Mind is an innovative tool design that aims to give the answer to these questions. It includes a powerful expert system which evaluates the casting design, optimizes the casting machine parameters through the PQ2 calculations and suggests the optimal gatings and process parameters.

Very fast – input data filling takes about one minute, the calculation is in real time – Castle Mind helps to replace the actual process conditions. One of the reasons is a result of the comprehensive description of the machine: the machine is described not only for its size or closing unit but also – and it makes the difference – for the injection unit. Accelerations, decelerations, delays, wear and tear of the machines are taken into account and the user is provided with the database of his own machines which may differ (very often) from a standard configuration. For example if Castle Mind calculates that the given machine is not able to reach a pre-set parameter (i.e. pressure or speed) the system suggests the modifications (such as a faster machine or a different plunger) and automatically adapts the calculation to the actual behaviour of the real machine.

Additionally Castle Mind – as an expert system – incorporates the foundry and moulding experience that is used to evaluate and supplement the theoretical formulae. The results of the calculations are expressed in a way that makes the results comprehensible and interpretable even for operators without a specific background; all the advice is provided in common foundry language rather than by numbers or colours.

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Product category: Simulation of casting processes

Castle Run

The design of the flow system within casting die technology has assumed greater importance in recent years and often represents the only space for the mould designer to improve the “part design- mould design-flow” process. In fact the mould maker is often asked to find solutions for good die geometry where changing thickness distribution or the actual machine is not possible.

Castle Run is an innovative simulation tool for the die design process that is both fast (model preparation and calculation takes just a few minutes) and reliable. It enables the tool designer to ensure the optimal runner geometry without running an entire simulation of the part as well as providing a platform for trying different solutions to achieve such desired results as:

Overall size and weight objectives;
Filling the cavity at the speed and in the time required;
The exclusion of air entrapments;
Minimise any energy loss during the injection phase;
Guarantee the easy ejection of the part;
Maximise the variable tolerances such as fill speed, metal and die temperatures etc.

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Product category: Simulation of casting processes

Castle Body

Air entrapment during the mould filling in high pressure die casting is a major problem that often leads to high amount of scrap, due to unexpected and dangerous gas porosity, especially in  high performance and structural parts.

The air flow in HPDC must  be considered much more important than metal flow: many commercial software solutions (the so-called single phase software) are available to predict the metal flow pattern inside the die, but at present no one of them is able to  model the air flow through the air vents in order to predict the actual air entrapment. Commercial simulation software are not actually considering air movement inside the die as they do not consider the air compressible fluid at all.

For them air is merely “the space not filled by metal” and the effect of air on fluid flow is not considered at all: no air vents or escape is modelled, no air compression and heating is considered, no air velocity at outlet is calculated.

Both theory and practice suggest that the flow of metal inside the die during the second phase injection cannot be considered a coherent flow with a compact fluid front but it’s composed by an high velocity stream of air and small metal droplets (or small bubbles inside a metal stream, as you prefer) that fills up the die. The dimension of these small droplets (or bubbles) is much smaller than the typical dimension of a practical mesh cell and the effect of actual air counterpressure on the flow is dramatic as people managing with vacuum diecasting well knows.

In order to model the spraying phenomena PiQ2 has developed a dual phase (air+metal) immiscible VOF (Volume of Fluid) solver: with this kind of technology air can be compressed inside the die, can move, escape through vents and can be finely dispersed inside the metal flow simulating for the first time what really happens inside the steel die with an high degree of accuracy as never seen before.

Thermal implications of air heating during the filling of the die are taken into account: air is heated up by the hot die and by the incoming liquid metal front so that it expands and its physical properties change time to time.

Real velocities and operating pressures are taken into account during the three stages of injection, not only during first or second phase like many other models do. Final intensification pressure is then applied to the entrapped air to compress it just like in the real process happens during solidification. Process parameters like phase’s strokes and plunger speed are calculated with an high degree of accuracy for a given casting geometry in order to simulate real casting conditions.

Progressive clogging of vents and vacuum channels are considered as function of metal flow inside the cavity, taking into account position of air escapes too, not only their shape and section.

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About us

Company details

Founded in 2011, PiQ2 develops and supports software solutions for the casting and foundry industries.
These are innovative solutions combining state of the art advanced modelling calculation technology with the enormous practical experience of both founders and partners working for many years in this specific area.
The company is located within the offices of The Centre for Multisector Technologies (CSMT). As a result PiQ2 has the benefits of privileged contacts with the research world and resulting synergies with financed research projects, qualified research manpower, consultancy and access to the foundry laboratories for testing the advanced modeling theories.

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