High-Temperature, Unbalanced, Dry Contact Face Seal, Interfacial Phenomenon, and Design Considerations

Heshmat, H., Shapiro, W.  “High-Temperature, Unbalanced, Dry Contact Face Seal, Interfacial Phenomenon, and Design Considerations,” (April 1989) Journal of the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers, Volume 45 (4), pp. 235-242.

Experimental evaluations were made of dry, unbalanced contact face seals to temperatures of 800ºC and face loadings to 510 kPa.  Titanium carbide was chosen for both the seal runner and seal ring.  Results indicated that compliance must be incorporated into the seal design to avoid face opening and excessive wear.  Interfacial friction produced a saddle shape in the seal ring, and environmental and frictional heating caused the formation of very small particles of titanium oxide which lodged in the face wave formation and acted as a lubricant.  Typically, the coefficient of friction varied from 0.15 to 0.3 and the wear factor varied from 3 to 5 x 10-11cm2/kg, indicative of low wear and long life.  the self-generation of the interfacial solid lubricant and its retention in the natural wave formation of the surface were the most profound discoveries of the program. 


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