September 2007

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HP Reliability: Improvements in floating-ring compressor seals

As is so often the case, compressor components undergo design changes as experience accumulates. Over the years, improved floating-ring shaft seals have become key elements in the uptime improvement ..

Bloch, Heinz P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

As is so often the case, compressor components undergo design changes as experience accumulates. Over the years, improved floating-ring shaft seals have become key elements in the uptime improvement inventory of modern plants. Take, as an example, improvements in Elliott Isocarbon seals and associated seal systems. User feedback indicates that these seal configurations can, in fact, compete with dry gas seals in such areas as safety and reliability.1 Safety attributes examined. While decades-old seal configurations (Fig. 1) may have resulted in mixed acceptance, the more recent versions of this product (Fig. 2) incorporate subtle (but important) changes in component geometry. Floating

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