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Title: Explosive decompression behaviour of elastomer seals and the influence of high pressure CO2 on their mechanical properties
Author: Davies, O. M.
Awarding Body: University of Wales Swansea
Current Institution: Swansea University
Date of Award: 1998
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A study has been completed investigating the elastomer seal failure phenomenon termed Explosive Decompression. In attempting to examine this phenomenon, a two pronged investigation strategy was initiated. The first of these was to develop a method for quantifying cavitation damage within elastomer materials as an attempt to differentiate the controlling parameters. The second strategy was to measure the effects on the mechanical properties caused by high pressure CO2 swelling. These changes, if found to be significant, would have to be considered during any future developments of a predictive model. After the successful development of a quantification method for measuring cavitation damage and the design and development of equipment for high pressure (50 bar) and high temperature (180 °C) CO2 tensile and tear testing (Rubber Tensometer), ten engineering elastomers were examined in "O" ring and sheet form. The results showed that a drop in sealing force is experienced and can be measured after elastomer seals are exposed to explosive decompression from saturation with 40 bar CO2. Moreover, in all ten elastomers studied, ultimate tensile stress, ultimate tensile strain and tear strength were significantly reduced after saturation with 40 bar CO2. In light of these results it seems reasonable to expect that both the method and subsequent results should be considered during any future investigation into explosive decompression or into any area where elastomers are dynamically used whilst in contact with high pressure swelling gaseous environments.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available