Leaders in Precision Injection Molding and Insert
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Leveraging our strong technical capabilities, Chemtech Plastics engineered a new, innovative injection molding process that produces thick, clear optical lenses. Prompted by one of our clients looking for a less expensive alternative to glass for a high-intensity light beacon, our main challenge was to meet the optical clarity requirements for a thick lens with a complicated parabolic geometry. In addition to engineering a new process, we built the tooling and ramped up to full production in only three months.
The material of construction was PMMA, a lightweight, shatterproof, thermoplastic resin. Our mold design incorporated a pioneering new runner and gating technique that allowed for very controlled injection and cooling cycles. This tightly monitored process prevented inclusions and other flaws commonly associated with uneven cooling, resulting in a part that was optically clear and 100% defect free. Along with finish machining, additional operations involved stress-relief annealing to ensure the highest degree of dimensional stability and a long service life.
Featuring dimensions of 2.25” in length x 2.0” in width, the lenses are fully compliant with both FAA and International Civil Aviation Organization standards. The client, who had been trying for years to migrate this high-intensity light beacon from glass to plastic, was very impressed with the results. Our products exhibited the same level of quality as the glass counterpart but were significantly less expensive. The client immediately ordered a second tool so we could boost production capacity.
Contact us today to learn more about our process for producing optically clear plastic lenses.