Research Papers: Friction & Wear

Wear Simulation of a Reciprocating Seal

[+] Author and Article Information
Nándor Békési1

Department of Machine and Product Design,  Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Műegyetem rkp. 3, H-1111 Budapest, Hungarybekesi.nandor@gt3.bme.hu

Károly Váradi

Department of Machine and Product Design,  Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Műegyetem rkp. 3, H-1111 Budapest, Hungary

Dávid Felhős

Department of Polymer Engineering, Faculty of Materials Science Engineering,  University of Miskolc, H-3515 Miskolc, Hungary


Corresponding author.

J. Tribol 133(3), 031601 (Jun 23, 2011) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4004301 History: Received April 20, 2010; Revised April 29, 2011; Published June 23, 2011; Online June 23, 2011

Modeling of the complex tribological behavior of the elastomer parts is required when designing sliding seal applications. Friction, wear, and lubrication mechanisms of rubber-like materials differ from those in case of metals, ceramics, and rigid polymers; therefore, their modeling also requires other techniques. Tribological behavior of a sliding seal was investigated both experimentally and numerically. In the experimental setup, the counterpart of the seal was pressed and rubbed against the section of the seal in various lubrication conditions. The worn surface of the seal was inspected using white light profilometry. The test configuration was modeled by FEA. A wear algorithm (based on the linear wear theory) with an attached damage analysis was applied to the frictional contact simulation. The nonlinear and time dependent material behavior of the seal was also taken into account. The results of the tribological simulation (in which the internal friction and the effects of damage by rupture of the rubber material were considered) are in good agreement with the results of the surface inspections done on the worn seal specimens. The presented wear simulation technique of deactivating elements is suitable for modeling wear that is larger than the size of the elements in the FE mesh.

Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Topics: Wear , Simulation
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Figure 1

The investigated seal ring and its counterpart

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Figure 2

Section view of the test configuration

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Figure 3

The sliding speed vs. time

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Figure 4

Surface of the seal after the test in case of fluid film lubrication

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Figure 5

Worn surfaces of some specimens with boundary lubrication

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Figure 6

The 2D profiles of the specimen’s intact and worn surfaces (note that the worn section was taken in the plane shown in Fig. 5). The lip is on the right.

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Figure 7

FE model of the seal section before (left) and after mounting in the holder (right)

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Figure 8

The Hertzian contact pressure distribution as a function of distance from the symmetry plane

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Figure 9

The motion of the plunger (continuous) and the points of the wear calculations in a cycle (dots)

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Figure 10

Flowchart of the simulation

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Figure 11

The wear process of one ridge of the seal. The dark elements are deactivated by the damage check algorithm. The images show the left ridge of the seal model after 0, 15, 30, 45, and 60 min of sliding, respectively.

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Figure 12

The measured and calculated worn profile of the reciprocating seal. Note that the calculated curve was shifted along the horizontal axis to match the axial position of the measured profile.



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