For improving the dynamic performance of the annular plain seals employed in pumps, porous materials are applied to the seal surface by insertion into the inlet part of the seal. The linear stiffness and damping coefficients of the seal film are calculated in the laminar-flow regime, assuming the mass effect of the fluid to be negligibly small. Numerical results show that the annular plain seals with the porous materials have larger main stiffness terms and smaller cross-coupled stiffness terms and main damping terms than the conventional ones with the solid surfaces. This tendency is more marked with increasing the axial length of the porous matrix applied to the seal surface. The larger main stiffness terms for “the porous seal” yield larger radial reaction force acting on a rotor as a consequence of small whirling motion of shaft about a centered position, which would contribute to rotor stability.

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