Tests are reported for a smooth seal with radial clearances 127 μm, 254 μm, 381 μm (1×, 2×, and 3×); length 45.72 mm, diameter 101.6 mm. An insert induced upstream preswirl. Swirl brakes (SBs), comprising 36 square cuts with axial depth 5.08 mm, radial height 6.35 mm, and circumferential width 6.35 mm each. Static and rotordynamic data were produced at ω = 2, 4, 6, 8 krpm, ΔP = 2.07, 4.14, 6.21, 8.27 bar, and eccentricity ratios ε0 = e0/Cr = 0.00, 0.27, 0.53, and 0.80. ISO VG 46 oil at a range of 46–49 °C was used, netting laminar flow (total Re ≤ 650). Dynamic measurements included components of the following vectors: (a) stator–rotor relative displacements, (b) acceleration, and (c) applied dynamic force in a stationary coordinate system. SBs were effective at the 3× clearance only. With the 3× seal, the cross-coupled stiffness coefficients have the same sign (not destabilizing). However, the seal has a negative direct stiffness K that could potentially “suck” the rotor into contact with the stator wall, along with dropping the pump rotor's natural frequency, further reducing its dynamic stability. Measurements were compared to predictions from a code by Zirkelback and San Andrés. Most predictions agree well with test data. Notable exceptions are the direct and cross-coupled stiffness coefficients for the 3× clearance. Predictions showed positive direct stiffness and opposite signs for the cross-coupled stiffness coefficients.

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