Redesign of Shape Memory Foam Manufacturing Tool

Photo of Abhishek Chowdhary, David Galvin, Jerry Schwarzbach, Indrajit Sehbi Students: Abhishek Chowdhary, David Galvin, Jerry Schwarzbach, Indrajit Sehbi

Sponsor: Baker-Hughes, Inc.

Date: Spring 2013

Requirements:
The design required the entire assembly to fit between the 4.6" outer diameter of the mandrel and 7" inner diameter of the conical die. Also, the design must withstand repeated loads of between 60,000-180,000 lbs.

Problem:
High density memory foam cylinders are used as filtration devices in oil wells. During installation, the memory foam must be compressed radially. Currently the memory foam is pulled through a conical die by a tool consisting of a mandrel and 26 lames welded to the leading edge of the mandrel. The lames surround the foam cylinder and pull the cylinder through the die by friction between the lames and the foam. Unfortunately, the lames were failing at the heat affected zone of the welds after only 15 draws. Our task was to find an alternative method of joining the lames to the mandrel to reduce the failure rate.

Solution:
The team designed a collar to mechanically attach the lames to the mandrel. The lames are bolted to the collar such that the frictional interface between the lames and the collar withstands the required load.

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