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Inflatable seals can be used for a variety of applications where sealing two surfaces that move in relationship to each other is required. By introducing a medium such as air or fluid, a rubber seal will begin to expand at a specified rate until a determined size of expansion is achieved. The rates and sizes of the expansion of an inflatable seal are pre-determined by one of the many shapes and sizes we have readily available. For unique or custom applications, we can engineer a solution.
Nearly all inflatable seals are custom fabricated for a specified application, and we can use many of our standard profiles to develop an inflatable seal to a custom required working parameter. By utilizing a standard profile, both time and money are saved.
A fabric reinforced seal is a completely molded seal that is built around the same operating principles as a homogeneous inflatable seal. The addition of fabric helps increase the amount of internal pressure by which the seal can operate, where higher pressures are required in a non-enclosed environment.
There are several various conditions which merit the use of a fabric reinforced seal. However, the common reason for using a reinforced seal is to achieve higher pressures.
Axially expanding Inflatable Seals have the centerline diameter as the fixed dimension. The Inflatable Seal expands in the perpendicular direction with respect to the diameter. These seals are sometimes also referred to as face seals.
Seals expanding radially outward have the Air Inlet Valves(AIV) typically installed into a channel with the inside diameter (ID) as the fixed dimension.
Inflatable seals with small outside diameters may end up wrinkling with this kind of expansion. Seals expanding radially inward have Air Inlet Valves(AIV) typically installed into a channel with the outside diameter (OD).
Inflatable Seals with circular geometry are the most commonly used seals owing to their wide application. Circular Inflatable Seals are the mostly preferred in manhole covers, hopper seals or in industrial machinery like fluidized bed dryers, autoclaves; where in the machines are made in circular dimensions.
Rectangular Inflatable Seals are very commonly found in door applications like doors for clean rooms, nuclear facility, satellite testing facility, etc. Please note, Western Rubbers’ does not fabricate rectangular seals with tight radiused corners. This is to ensure the seal expansion is not compromised at any point.
U shaped Inflatable Seals are a common configuration in inflatable gate seals. Ends of u-shaped seals are vulcanized and hence cannot inflate. The uninflated portion of the seal depends upon the seal profile and application. Appropriate retention mechanisms for this configuration is available at Western Rubbers.
Inflatable seals with straight configurations are most commonly found in clamps and actuators. Straight seals have vulcanized ends that do not expand. The amount of uninflated area in straight seals depends on profile and application. We provide retention mechanisms that work well for straight seals.
A fabric-reinforced inflatable seal is an elastomeric tube molded into a concave, convoluted or flat configuration. It is designed to round out with the introduction of an inflation medium to form a tight barrier between a mounting and striking surface.
An inflatable seal operates by introducing an inflation medium. Upon introduction of the inflation medium, it quickly expands to the striking surface, affecting a positive seal. When the inflation medium is removed, the seal retracts naturally to the deflated molded configuration. This provides clearance for free movement of one or both surfaces.
An inflatable seal has several advantages over other sealing methods: • It provides a leak-proof closure, yet allows clearance when needed. • It simplifies the design of the structure and hardware. • It minimizes the need for close machining and/or fabricating tolerances. • It is not subject to a compression set which negates effectiveness of other seals.
Yes! Essentially all Western Polyrub Inflatable seals are custom rubber seal designs. After over 30-years in business, more than 8000 unique products have been developed. Take a look at all of the unique designs at inflatable seals product category.
It’s important to consider the application’s environment: gas temperature, radiation and abrasion exposure when maintaining your inflatable seal. Learn more about these application environmental considerations.
Generally for nominal pressure applications we suggest customers to avoid fabric reinforced seals so as to avoid high costs. But if your differential pressure requirements are higher than 7-8 Bar then we suggest customers go for fabric.
For an overview of parameters that determine the correct design, Our design & technical team will guide you through the manufacturing process, so start today by calling our sales department at 91-37094253 , 022-66944301.