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AERODYNAMIC SEALS FOR ROTARY MACHINE

United States Patent Application

*** PATENT GRANTED ***
20140008871
9,255,642
A1
View the Complete Application at the US Patent & Trademark Office
An aerodynamic seal assembly for a rotary machine is provided. The assembly includes multiple sealing device segments disposed circumferentially intermediate to a stationary housing and a rotor. Each of the segments includes a shoe plate with a forward-shoe section and an aft-shoe section having multiple labyrinth teeth therebetween facing the rotor. The shoe plate is configured to allow a high pressure fluid to a front portion of the plurality of the labyrinth teeth and a low pressure fluid behind the plurality of the labyrinth teeth and further configured to generate an aerodynamic force between the shoe plate and the rotor. The sealing device segment also includes multiple bellow springs or flexures connected to the shoe plate and to a top interface element, wherein the multiple bellow springs or flexures are configured to allow the high pressure fluid to occupy a forward cavity and the low pressure fluid to occupy an aft cavity. Further, the sealing device segments include a secondary seal attached to the top interface element at one first end and positioned about the multiple bellow springs or flexures and the shoe plate at one second end.
Bidkar, Rahul Anil (Niskayuna, NY), Cirri, Massimiliano (Muenchen, DE), Thatte, Azam Mihir (Rotterdam, NY), Williams, John Robert (Fairfield, OH)
GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY (SCHENECTADY NY)
13/ 542,780
July 6, 2012
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT [0001] This invention was made with partial Government support under contract number DE-FC26-05NT42643 awarded by U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.