Misalignment-induced macro-elastohydrodynamic lubrication in rotary lip seals

F.X. Borras*, M.B. de Rooij, D.J. Schipper

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
62 Downloads (Pure)


Typically, film formation in a rotary lip seal is explained by microscopic effects, but here it will be explained from a macroscopic point of view. When the nominal parallelism between the shaft and the seal is lost, the contact area is distorted leading to a skewed sealing profile. The resultant slanted gap between the shaft and the seal presents a macroscopic wedge profile in the direction of rotation, hence constituting a source of hydrodynamics. An elastohydrodynamic model is developed predicting the implications of operating a rotary lip seal under misalignment. It is concluded that the non-concentric operation of rotary lip seals leads to a bidirectional fluid migration from the back to the spring side of the seal and vice versa.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106479
JournalTribology international
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


  • UT-Hybrid-D
  • Film thickness
  • Lip seal
  • Lubrication
  • Marine
  • Misalignment
  • Rotary
  • Soft
  • Stern tube seal
  • Elastohydrodynamic


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