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Polymer Labyrinth SealsPolymer Labyrinth Seal Diagram

Non Contact Labyrinth Seal Solutions

When it comes to seals, labyrinth seals are a standard design choice, and engineers have been researching and apply labyrinth seal technology for over one hundred years.  We at Advanced EMC Technologies are a reliable source for advanced polymer seals solutions.


What Kind of Seal is a Labyrinth Seal?

A labyrinth seal is a type of dynamic mechanical clearance seal characterized by long life and low friction that is typically used to isolate areas of low pressure from areas of high pressure.

How Do Polymer Labyrinth Seals Work?

The word “labyrinth” usually brings to mind a maze full of complex, confusing passageways, which is an excellent description of how a labyrinth seal works.

Labyrinth seals make it difficult for liquids to make their way through the seal barrier because of a complicated set of paths that a liquid or contaminant has to maneuver through in order to overcome the seal barrier.   In fact, one of the goals of these complicated pathways is to create areas of turbulence and flow friction that reduce the kinetic energy of the contaminants trying to get in.  Because of this, they outperform regular seals in keeping contaminants out and liquids in.  Regular seals can do an outstanding job of keeping liquids in, but do not perform so well in keeping contaminants out.

What are the Benefits of Polymer Labyrinth Seals?

Benefits of polymer labyrinth seals include efficiency, ease of installation, and excellent reliability.  Reliability is due to several factors: corrosion resistance, gall resistance, and the fact that they can maintain clearance during occasional rubs, unlike lip seals.

PTFE Alloys for Abradable Labyrinth Seals

Typical locations where Abradable seals are used in turbo machinery can generally classified into two groups vane tip clearance seals and labyrinth clearance seals.
Torlon Labyrinth seals


PEEK Labyrinth Seals

PEEK is generally specified as fixed tooth labyrinth seal.  Sometimes referred to as a rub tolerant seal where reduced clearance is achievable and if contact is made between the seal and the rotating member the fixed teeth on the seal will deflect during contact without wear or damage  to the rotor.


Torlon Labyrinth Seals

Torlon fixed tooth non-contact seals provide the same deflection characteristics of PEEK with the advantage of improved mechanical properties under prolonged service temperatures.


6 Interesting Articles on Polymer Labyrinth Seals