Analysis of self-tapping screw joints in fibre glass reinforced PEI polymer used in the automotive industry
Área Ingeniería Mecánica, Naval y Aeronáutica
Automotive component joints
Rheological model
Loosing torque
Finite element anallysis
Mechanical properties
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Cumbicus, W. E.; Estrems, M.; Arizmendi-Jaca, M. (Miguel); et al. "Analysis of self-tapping screw joints in fibre glass reinforced PEI polymer used in the automotive industry". INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ADVANCED MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY. , 2023,
This article presents a study of the joining of polyetherimide (PEI) polymer parts reinforced with fibre glass which has great application in the automotive sector. A simulation model based on the finite element method is proposed. For the modelling of the polymeric material, the three-network viscoplastic (TNV) rheological model was used, with very adequate results and producing a good fit with the experimental data. In addition, a methodology is proposed that allows simplifying a three-dimensional to an axisymmetric model, which implies a notable reduction in computational cost. In addition, the work includes an experimental analysis that evaluates the tightening torque under conditions of assembly repetitiveness, relaxation over time and influence of thermal cycles. These scenarios have a different influence depending on the geometry of the self-tapping screw used. Regarding repetitiveness, it has been verified that PF-30 (CELOspArk (R)) loses 17.16% while in Delta-PT (DELTA PT (R)) it loses up to 41.93% in the tenth repetition. In contrast, in the relaxation over time scenario, the PF-30 loses 13.38% and the Delta-PT loses 17.82%. Finally, regarding the thermal cycles, cooling allows to slightly delay the loss of tightening torque in both screws in a similar way; however, in the heating stage, 36.89% is lost with PF-30 and only 14.66% with Delta-PT. This study represents an improvement in the knowledge of the joining processes of self-tapping screws with polymeric materials of an engineering nature. The simulation model can be easily adapted to other materials and other geometries, and the experimental study offers a vision of the evolution of tightening conditions in realistic operating scenarios.

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