High Temperature Leakage Performance of a Hybrid Brush Seal Compared to a Standard Brush Seal and a Labyrinth Seal
MetadataShow full item record
Adequate sealing in turbomachinery reduces secondary leakage and results in more efficient and stable systems. Labyrinth seals are most common, although brush seals are popular in specialized applications. The Hybrid Brush Seal (HBS) is a novel design that adds to the bristle brush matrix a number of cantilever pads that rest on the rotor surface. Upon shaft rotation the pads lift due to the generation of a hydrodynamic gas film while the brushes effectively seal an upstream pressure. Hence the HBS has no wear and no local thermal distortion effects. Measurements of leakage versus pressure differential are obtained in a three-teeth labyrinth, a conventional brush seal, and a hybrid brush seal for operation at high temperature (300ºC), with shaft surface speeds to 27 m/s, and at supply pressures to 3.5 bar. Flow measurements are presented in terms of a flow factor to remove dependency on the air temperature and supply pressure. The measurements demonstrate the HBS leaks less (~61%) than a standard brush seal and is significantly better (~38%) than a similarly sized labyrinth seal. Predictions of flow through a labyrinth seal predict well at supply pressures under 1.7 bar but overpredict by as much as 25% at high supply pressures. A porous medium fluid flow model predicts the flow through the HBS and brush seal. The model for the HBS and brush seal underpredicts the flow rate at low supply pressures but match well at high supply pressures. Measurements of the drag torque of the test seals show the HBS has a larger torque when pressurized compared to the brush seal and labyrinth seal. This indicates that the HBS experiences a larger degree of blow-down due to the pads decreasing the clearance. The mechanical parameters of the brush seal and HBS are found based upon the flexibility function from impact load tests. A combined structural and dry friction damping model represent well the measured flexibility. An equivalent damping is found based upon the energy dissipation. Based upon the damping ratio, the HBS has twice of the viscous damping as the brush seal at a supply pressure of 2.0 bar.
Ashton, Zachary (2009). High Temperature Leakage Performance of a Hybrid Brush Seal Compared to a Standard Brush Seal and a Labyrinth Seal. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from