These results were very disappointing, and therefore a re-evaluation of the Load/Restraints assumptions was performed. Further investigation found that the edges of the plate were not being given a mechanism for heat loss. As the edges of the plates are very exposed, it was assumed that the convection coefficient between the edges of the plate and the air was 10W/mK. The set temperature on the top face of the plate was removed as it was deemed to be artificially forcing the analysis to display high temperature consistency across the plate. Finally, because there was not a temperature setpoint, an average power of the heaters was reduced to an assumption of 175W.
With these new constraints, results were obtained that better reflected the behaviours described by the users of the Kingston Hot Press. The image below represents temperatures across the bottom surface of the plate for an aluminum plate of 0.25" with the colour legend ranging from 485K-318K.
Very similar results were found for the steel plate (image not shown) . The image below represents temperatures across the bottom of the hot press for the same plate and it qualitatively appears that there is minimal temperature fluctuations across the bottom face of the plate. Again the steel plate simulation produced quantitatively indistinguishable results.