On the thermodynamic process in the bulk-flow model for the estimation of the dynamic coefficients of labyrinth seals

[+] Author and Article Information
Filippo Cangioli

Politecnico di Milano, Via La Masa 1, 20156, Milan, Italy

Paolo Pennacchi

Politecnico di Milano, Via La Masa 1, 20156, Milan, Italy

Giuseppe Vannini

General Electric Oil&Gas, Via Felice Matteucci 2, 50127, Florence, Italy

Lorenzo Ciuchicchi

General Electric Oil&Gas, 480 Allée Gustave Eiffel, Le Creusot, France

Andrea Vania

Politecnico di Milano, Via La Masa 1, 20156, Milan, Italy

Steven Chatterton

Politecnico di Milano, Via La Masa 1, 20156, Milan, Italy

Phuoc Vinh Dang

The University of Danang - Danang University of Science and Technology, Nguyen Luong Bang Road, 54. Da Nang City, Vietnam

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4037919 History: Received July 04, 2017; Revised July 26, 2017


The influence of sealing components on the stability of turbomachinery has become a key topic because oil and gas market is increasingly requiring high rotational speed and high efficiency, which implies the clearance reduction in the seals. The experimental results of a 14 teeth-on-stator labyrinth seal with nitrogen, performed in the high-pressure seal test rig owned by GE Oil&Gas, are presented in the paper. Both experimental tests with positive and negative pre-swirl values were performed in order to investigate the pre-swirl effect on the cross-coupled stiffness coefficients. In this paper, the authors improve the state-of-the-art one-control volume bulk-flow model [1], by introducing the effect of the energy equation in the zero-order solution. In this way, the real gas properties are evaluated in a more accurate way because the enthalpy variation, expected through the seal cavities, is taken into account in the model. The authors, considering the energy equation only in the zero-order solution, assume that the enthalpy is not a function of the clearance perturbation (i.e. of the rotor perturbed motion). Overall, by taking into account the energy equation, a better estimation of the coefficients in the case of negative pre-swirl ratio has been obtained (as it results from the comparison with the experimental benchmark tests). The numerical results are also compared to the state-of-the-art bulk-flow model developed by Thorat and Childs (2010), highlighting the improvement obtained.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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