Bulkhead seals are critical safety components which stop progressive flooding between watertight compartments at the location of the shaft penetration through the bulkhead. Most bulkhead seal technology is based on a contacting approach where sealing materials are always in contact with the spinning shaft. Radial and axial shaft motion, vibration, shaft mis-alignment, bulkhead mis-alignment, seal orientation and air pressure differentials can cause these contacting bulkhead seals to pre-maturely wear or fail. This wear then leads to substantial maintenance costs if the seals are properly inspected and maintained or can lead to catastrophic failure should the seals not be properly maintained. This paper will present a new non-contacting and non-rotating bulkhead seal design that only activates in the presence of water.
Non-Contacting Water Activated Bulkhead Seals: Improved Safety and Reduced Costs
Ludlow, C., Cutler, A., Klepper, S., and M. van Schoor. "Non-Contacting Water Activated Bulkhead Seals: Improved Safety and Reduced Costs." Paper presented at the SNAME 13th Propeller and Shafting Symposium, Norfolk, Virginia, USA, September 2012. doi: https://doi.org/10.5957/PSS-2012-011
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