The dynamic response of a flexibly-mounted ring to runout of the rotating seat in mechanical face seal is analyzed assuming small perturbations. It is found that tracking ability of the stator depends only on its dynamic characteristics and operating conditions and is not affected by the amount of runout. Three different modes of dynamic response are shown and the condition for parallel tracking is presented. The present analysis is limited to flat-faced seals with no secondary seal damping. Nevertheless it provides a good insight into the dynamic behavior of noncontacting face seals.

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