Testimonial: Dynamic sealing capacity of the seal of a mining mill

Ferry-Capitain drew on Cetim’s expertise to validate the dynamic sealing capacity of the 1/10-scale seal of a 14-metre diameter gear wheel. For that purpose, a test bench designed to accommodate wheels with diameters of up to 1.5 metres was used.

As a specialist in power transmission components for rotating tube applications, Ferry-Capitain has extensive expertise and the necessary machining equipment to produce girth gears with diameters of up to 16 metres!

The company recently developed a gear wheel with a diameter of 14 metres, specifically designed to be integrated into a reduction gearset developed by CMD (which is also part of the CIF group) which will be installed in a mining mill. In addition to the design of this impressive girth gear, Ferry-Capitain developed an elastomer seal which meets the requirements of such an application. However, it was not possible to validate the dynamic behaviour and sealing capacity of a seal of that size on a test bench. “Cetim has testing equipment designed to accommodate seals with diameters of up to 1.5 metres, so we entrusted them with the dynamic sealing characterisation tests of an identical seal but at a 1/10 scale. We also wanted to compare the performance of the seal under grease and oil lubrication conditions”, explains Jean-Baptiste Prunier, technical manager at Ferry-Capitain.

Although the 1/10 scale allowed the seal distortion phenomena to be avoided, it was absolutely necessary to adapt the test conditions so as to obtain results that would be representative of the behaviour of the 14-metre diameter seal. The test parameters were therefore defined jointly with Cetim’s experts. Multiple test campaigns were then carried out to characterise the dynamic sealing capacity of several seals with different lubrication solutions using grease and oil. The analysis of the values measured and recorded throughout the tests, e.g. torque and temperature, confirmed that, whatever the lubrication method used, the seal developed by Ferry-Capitain performed as expected within the required working range.

Cetim’s asset

Cetim has the skills and resources to design and implement testing procedures and equipment to validate the dynamic sealing capacity of rotating seals ranging from 1 cm to 1.5 m in diameter, over a broad spectrum of temperatures (‑50°C to 200°C), speeds (50 rpm to 30,000 rpm), pressures, off-centring and vibration. Cetim can adapt the test conditions to the requirements of the application and provides an analysis of the results to assist the customer with its technical choices.

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