Material Selection

Material Selection – a major factor for the performance of a seal is that it is made of the right materials. There are many different requirements to a seal. A seal must have many other qualities other than just being tight. The requirements vary from application to application.

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When a sealing material is chosen many factors must be taken into consideration:

Compatibility:
The material must be compatible with the fluid and the mating surface.

Temperature:
The material must keep its strength at elevated temperatures. To Preserve the sealing efficiency the material must maintain its softness and elasticity at low temperatures.

Wear resistance:
For dynamic seals it is essential for the service life that the material has a good wear Resistance.

Mating surface:
For dynamic seals it is essential that material is gentle to the mating surface. The seal material must not be abrasive to the mating surface.

Extrusion resistance:
At the combination of high temperatures and high pressure the material must be extrusion resistant. Dry running qualities:
For dynamic applications where the fluid is a gas or a liquid with poor lubricating properties, the seal material must have good dry running qualities.

Ageing:
For most seal materials ageing is a big problem. For applications where the seal is inactive for decades a decomposed seal material may be fatal when activated.

Friction:
For most dynamic applications it is essential that the seal material has a low coefficient of friction. A seal with a high friction generates a lot of heat. If the system is not cooled the heat could reduce the service life of the seal dramatically. In all cases a seal with a high friction costs a lot of energy.

Stick-slip:
For a smooth and chatter free movement it is important that the material do not have stickslip. If an accurate positioning is important a stickslip free material is a must.

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