The industrial applications of brush seals have been increasing due to their superior sealing performance. Advances in the understanding of seal behavior have been pushing the design limits to higher-pressure load, temperature, surface speed, and rotor excursion levels. The highest sealing performance can be achieved when the bristle pack maintains contact with the rotor surface. However, due to many design and operational constraints, most seals operate with some clearance. This operating clearance cannot be avoided due to rotor runouts, transient operating conditions, or excessive bristle wear. In some applications, a minimum initial clearance is required to ensure a certain amount of flow rate for component cooling or purge flow. Typically, brush seal failure occurs in the form of degraded sealing performance due to increasing seal clearance. The seal performance is mainly characterized by the flow field in close vicinity of the bristle pack, through the seal-rotor clearance, and within the bristle pack. This work investigates the flow field for a brush seal operating with some bristle-rotor clearance. A nonlinear form of the momentum transport equation for a porous medium of the bristle pack has been solved by employing the computational fluid dynamics analysis. The results are compared with prior experimental data. The flow field for the clearance seal is observed to have different characteristics compared to that for the contact seal. Outlined as well are the flow features influencing the bristle dynamics.
Evaluation of Flow Behavior for Clearance Brush Seals
Dogu, Y., Aksit, M. F., Demiroglu, M., and Dinc, O. S. (January 9, 2008). "Evaluation of Flow Behavior for Clearance Brush Seals." ASME. J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power. January 2008; 130(1): 012507. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.2770479
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