Research and Development of a Friction-Controlled Face Seal.
AIR FORCE AERO PROPULSION LAB WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OHIO
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This investigation was undertaken to develop a dynamic seal for space power equipment. The concept investigated was a face seal designed so its axial load automatically varied to maintain light sliding contact on the seal faces even with large changes in the power system conditions. Preliminary testing was done on a seal sized for a 1-inch diameter shaft, sealing 20 psia nitrogen from air at room temperature, and operating at rotational speeds from 3000 to 12,000 rpm. The testing has demonstrated a 20 to 1 reduction in seal friction over that attainable with conventional designs. This should correspond to a minimum increase in life of 20 times. This reduction in friction was achieved in spite of the absence of seal liquid lubrication. Author