The term “labyrinth” conjures up images of elaborate mazes, and in the context of seals that really isn’t far from the truth. They are a fascinating use of fluid dynamics to prevent contaminant intrusion in an extremely effective manner. And these seals are used in everything from basic machine spindles to cryogenic turbopumps for rockets. There are many benefits of labyrinth seals.
A labyrinth seal is a specific type of dynamic mechanical clearance seal that utilizes a maze-like cross section to create areas of turbulence to prevent contaminants from making their way in and fluids from making their way out. They also reduce the clearance that is available for particles to enter. Labyrinth seals are most typically used to isolate an area of high pressure from an area of low pressure, but they work well in other applications as well.
In this week’s blog post, we will discuss the many benefits of labyrinth seals, their applications, and more!