US 10,889,031 B2
Method of curing a polymeric form and curing device for polymeric materials using thermal expansion
Timothy Brett Rhyne, Greenville, SC (US); Brian D. Wilson, Greenville, SC (US); Adib Tony Chebli, Greenville, SC (US); and Steven M. Cron, Greenville, SC (US)
Assigned to Compagnie Generale des Etablissements Michelin, Clermont-Ferrand (FR)
Appl. No. 15/570,800
Filed by Timothy Brett Rhyne, Greenville, SC (US); Brian D. Wilson, Greenville, SC (US); Adib Tony Chebli, Greenville, SC (US); and Steven M. Cron, Greenville, SC (US)
PCT Filed Apr. 29, 2016, PCT No. PCT/US2016/030019
§ 371(c)(1), (2) Date Oct. 31, 2017,
PCT Pub. No. WO2016/178970, PCT Pub. Date Nov. 10, 2016.
Claims priority of provisional application 62/155,938, filed on May 1, 2015.
Claims priority of application No. PCT/US2015/033256 (WO), filed on May 29, 2015.
Prior Publication US 2018/0117801 A1, May 3, 2018
Int. Cl. B29C 43/10 (2006.01); B29C 33/38 (2006.01); B29C 43/32 (2006.01); B29D 30/02 (2006.01); B29C 43/36 (2006.01); B29C 43/52 (2006.01)
CPC B29C 43/10 (2013.01) [B29C 33/38 (2013.01); B29C 43/32 (2013.01); B29C 43/36 (2013.01); B29D 30/02 (2013.01); B29C 43/52 (2013.01); B29C 2043/3261 (2013.01)] 19 Claims
OG exemplary drawing
 
1. A method of curing a polymeric form, the method comprising the steps of:
arranging an uncured polymeric form along a base member, the base member being at least semi-rigid at least when in a curing configuration;
arranging a thermal expansion member in close relation to the uncured polymeric form and either on a side of the uncured polymeric form opposite the base member or between the uncured polymeric form and the base member;
arranging a constraining member relative to the base member such that the thermal expansion member and the uncured polymeric form are both positioned between the constraining member and the base member, the thermal expansion member and the uncured polymeric form being enclosed within a curing chamber formed by the base member, the constraining member, and one or more side members when in a curing arrangement, the side members being separable from each of the base member and the constraining member, the constraining member maintaining a constant position in relation to the base member with the constraining member being at least semi-rigid at least when in a curing configuration;
heating the thermal expansion member to expand the thermal expansion member in size into an expanded state, where in the expanded state the thermal expansion member applies pressure to the uncured polymeric form with both the base member and the constraining member being in an at least semi-rigid curing configuration;
maintaining expansion of the thermal expansion member in the expanded state to maintain the application of pressure to the uncured polymeric form while the uncured polymeric form is being cured to form a cured polymeric form;
curing the uncured polymeric form to form the cured polymeric form; and
separating the cured polymeric form and the thermal expansion member.