Simulation of Fluid Properties

Insight into the Fluid Dynamics of Adhesives

Ausschnitt aus der Simulation der Klebstoffströmung in einem Kolbendosierer
© Fraunhofer IFAM
Simulation of the fluid flow (adhesive) inside a piston pump.
© Fraunhofer IFAM
Calculated regions where there is undesired curing of the adhesive inside the piston pump.

Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is used in a wide variety of technical fields for the description of flow processes. These include aerodynamics, fluid transport in chemical engineering, filling process in injection molding, and combustion processes in engines. Up until now, CFD methods have been little used to study the machine processing of adhesives.

Unlike air and water, virtually all adhesives are non-Newtonian fluids exhibiting complex flow properties. This means that manufactures and users of adhesive dosing and application units have difficulties predicting the flow properties of adhesives in these units, resulting in unexpected flow effects, planning problems, or sudden breaks in production.



Fraunhofer IFAM specialists in adhesive bonding technology utilize CFD methods for customers and research projects in order to get a fuller understanding of the fluid properties of adhesives during production processes. The basis for effective simulation starts with the rheological characterization of the adhesive, the validation of the simulations on a monitored application system, and detailed knowledge of the industrial production conditions.

The findings are used to

  • Prevent failure during the production
  • Design of plants and components
  • Determine process limits
  • Identify the causes of interruptions in production
  • Optimize plants and processes