Brush seals have proven to be an attractive alternative to labyrinth seals for turbomachinery applications. This innovation in seal technology utilizes both the high temperature capability of special-alloy wire and the flexural adaptability of fibers to accommodate a wide range of operating conditions that are encountered during service. The effectiveness of the seal is principally derived from the bristles ability to endure forces imparted by both the fluid and shaft, and yet maintain contact between the filament tips and the surface of the rotor. Consequently, contact forces generated along the interface of the fiber tip and rotor are an important consideration for both the design and performance of the rotor-seal assembly. This paper focuses on evaluating brush seal forces that arise along the surface of the rotor due to the dimensional disparity or interference between the rotor-fiber. Filament tip contact forces are computed on the basis of an in-plane, large deformation mechanics analysis of a cantilever beam, and validation of the model is assessed by using an electronic balance for measuring the shear and normal force exerted by a bristle tip onto a flat, hardened surface. Formulation of the mechanics problem is briefly reviewed, and includes the effect of Coulombic friction at the interface of the fiber tip and rotor. Filament contact force is used as a basis for computing bearing stress along the fiber-rotor interface. Results are reported for a range of brush seal design parameters in order to provide a better understanding of the role that seal geometry, friction, and bristle flexural rigidity play in generating rotor contact force.
Analysis of Contact Mechanics for Rotor-Bristle Interference of Brush Seal
Contributed by the Tribology Division of the THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERS for presentation at the ASME/STLE Tribology Conference, Cancun, Mexico October 27–30, 2002. Manuscript received by the Tribology Division February 14, 2002 revised manuscript received July 2, 2002. Associate Editor: J. A. Tichy.
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Stango, R. J., Zhao, H., and Shia, C. Y. (March 19, 2003). "Analysis of Contact Mechanics for Rotor-Bristle Interference of Brush Seal ." ASME. J. Tribol. April 2003; 125(2): 414–421. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.1510879
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