The Residence Time Distribution (RTD) is key to optimizing the mixing ability of an extruder. For both sensitive and reactive materials, it is important to know how long particles remain in the barrel and how long the polymer remains, for instance, in a kneading element. To assess the influence of different screw configurations on the RTD, a low-concentration tracer particle was injected into the feeding section and measured inline by fluorescence spectroscopy1 both inside the barrel and at the extruder exit. The measurements were conducted using polypropylene with different amounts of organic peroxide. Measuring the residence time at various positions along the screw allows the RTD to be determined for just one screw element. Furthermore, we show the influence of different screw configurations on the polydispersity of polypropylene.

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