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Elastic leak of a seal

Qihan Liu's picture

Our paper in the new journal Extreme Mechanics Letter has come online:  An elastomeric seal may leak by elastic deformation without any material damage. We describe elastic leak using a theoretical model, and watch a seal deform and leak using a transparent experimental setup. The elastomer seals the fluid by forming contact with surrounding hard materials. As the fluid pressure increases, the contact stress also increases but not as much. When the fluid pressure surpasses the contact stress, the elastomer and the hard materials lose contact in some region, forming a leaking path. The critical fluid pressure for elastic leak depends on the geometry and constraint of the seal, but is insensitive to the rate at which the fluid is injected. Our study points to the significance of elastic deformation in modes of failure that also involve material damage.


bright-crystal's picture


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