Labyrinth seals are widely applied in the turbomachinery to control the leakage flow through the clearance between the stationary and rotating components. The fluid excitation induced by the labyrinth seal would deteriorate the stability of turbomachinery shaft. Developing an accurate and rapid prediction approach is crucial for the analysis of the fluid excitation rotordynamics of the labyrinth seal. The objective of this study is to analyze the applicability of leakage models using Bulk-Flow method and investigate the factors affecting the rotordynamic characteristics of the labyrinth seal. An elliptical orbit for rotor whirling was assumed in the one-control-volume Bulk-Flow model considering an isentropic process to predict the frequency-dependent rotordynamic coefficients of the labyrinth seal. The optimal leakage model was determined by comprehensively analyzing the applicability of 72 leakage models. Employing the optimal leakage model in the Bulk-Flow method, the effects of sealing clearance, pressure ratio, preswirl ratio and rotational speed on the rotordynamic characteristics of the labyrinth seal were investigated. The conclusions show that the Bulk-Flow method has an average prediction error of around 10% for the leakage flow rate, cross-coupled stiffness and direct damping when equipped with the optimal leakage model. Increasing preswirl ratio has a significantly destabilizing effect on the rotor stability, while the influence of increasing rotational speed is strongly related to preswirl direction. The effective damping of the labyrinth seal is sensitive to the inlet pressure, but insensitive to the outlet pressure and sealing clearance. The crossover frequency is almost impervious to the inlet pressure, outlet pressure and sealing clearance.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.