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International Journal of Rotating Machinery
Volume 2 (1996), Issue 3, Pages 167-177

A Small Perturbation CFD Method for Calculation of Seal Rotordynamic Coefficients

CFD Research Corporation, Huntsville, AL NASA Lewis Research Center, Cleveland, OH, USA

Copyright © 1996 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Seal rotordynamic coefficients link the fluid reaction forces to the rotor motion, and hence are needed in the stability calculations for the overall rotating systems. Presented in this paper is a numerical method for calculations of rotordynamic coefficients of turbomachinery seals with rotors nominally at centered, eccentric and/or misaligned position. The rotor of the seal is assumed to undergo a prescribed small whirling motion about its nominal position. The resulting flow variable perturbations are expressed as Fourier functions in time. The N-S equations are used to generate the governing equations for the perturbation variables. Use of complex variables for the perturbations renders the problem quasi-steady. The fluid reaction forces are integrated on the rotor surface to obtain the fluid reaction forces at several different whirl frequencies. The rotordynamic coefficients are calculated using appropriate curve fitting. Details of the model are presented, and sample results for concentric and eccentric annular incompressible flow seals are included to demonstrate the capability and accuracy of the proposed method.