The “short bearing” equation of lubrication theory, modified to include inertial effects, is used to study the influence of geometric deviations from the ideal. It is found that the centrifugal force could be responsible for hydrodynamic features of the leakage flow which are theoretically unexplainable in the absence of this inertial effect. There is good evidence that the theory and the results are applicable over the entire laminar range of operation, provided the nominal clearance is small compared to the nominal radius.

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