DOI: 10.3390/app132312868 ISSN: 2076-3417

Prediction of Short-Shot Defects in Injection Molding by Transfer Learning

Zhe-Wei Zhou, Hui-Ya Yang, Bei-Xiu Xu, Yu-Hung Ting, Shia-Chung Chen, Wen-Ren Jong
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • General Engineering
  • Instrumentation
  • General Materials Science

For a long time, the traditional injection molding industry has faced challenges in improving production efficiency and product quality. With advancements in Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE) technology, many factors that could lead to product defects have been eliminated, reducing the costs associated with trial runs during the manufacturing process. However, despite the progress made in CAE simulation results, there still exists a slight deviation from actual conditions. Therefore, relying solely on CAE simulations cannot entirely prevent product defects, and businesses still need to implement real-time quality checks during the production process. In this study, we developed a Back Propagation Neural Network (BPNN) model to predict the occurrence of short-shots defects in the injection molding process using various process states as inputs. We developed a Back Propagation Neural Network (BPNN) model that takes injection molding process states as input to predict the occurrence of short-shot defects during the injection molding process. Additionally, we investigated the effectiveness of two different transfer learning methods. The first method involved training the neural network model using CAE simulation data for products with length–thickness ratios (LT) of 60 and then applying transfer learning with real process data. The second method trained the neural network model using real process data for products with LT60 and then applied transfer learning with real process data from products with LT100. From the results, we have inferred that transfer learning, as compared to conventional neural network training methods, can prevent overfitting with the same amount of training data. The short-shot prediction models trained using transfer learning achieved accuracies of 90.2% and 94.4% on the validation datasets of products with LT60 and LT100, respectively. Through integration with the injection molding machine, this enables production personnel to determine whether a product will experience a short-shot before the mold is opened, thereby increasing troubleshooting time.

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