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Hermetic Sealing for Movable Joints


The Development of the New Principle of Hermetic Sealing of Movable Joints and Construction of an Ideal Sealing Element (on an Example of Oil Producing Equipment)

Tech Area / Field

  • MAN-TRI/Tribology/Manufacturing Technology
  • ENV-EHS/Environmental Health and Safety/Environment

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Research Institute of Polimeric Materials, Russia, Perm reg., Perm


  • Magellan Energy Ltd, USA, FL, Oviedo\nNapier University, UK, Edinburgh

Project summary

The main method of oil production on the fields with deep deposition and low reservoir pressure in all oil producing countries is oil pulling from wells by means of rod well pumping units (RWPU). In Russia, for example, about 80000 of such units are used.

Due to the depletion (exhaustion) of many exploited fields and the discovery of new ones the growth of needs in such kinds of equipment is observed and requirements to its performance characteristics are getting more strict. Therefore the problem of reliability and ecological safety improving, exploitation cost decreasing, and in the ideal-the practical providing of non-stop operation during maximal possible time is an actual technical and economical problem of oil-producing.

The weak point on which workability and efficiency of RWPU functioning is depended is a sealing joint (gland) intended for sucker rod pump stock sealing.

In the existing pump constructions the stock sealing at reciprocating motion is reached by means of relatively expensive collars made of different materials (rubber, polyurethane).

While the pump functioning the collars are quickly worn out along the working (fractioning) surface and while reaching wear level equal to 20 % of weight they loose the sealing capacity. This happens after 13-20 days, after that it is necessary to change (replace) the collars. On more disadvantage (and operation principal) of the traditional gland is the necessity of every day collars tightening.

The reason redoubling the disadvantages is that while drawing down the oil level in a bottom well the collars work in dry friction mode and consequently in a mode of accelerated wear. The result is uncontrollable oil blow out and pollution of environment.

The aim of the project is the development of an ideal sealing joint (gland) for oil producing equipment on the basis of studying and using the new principle of hermetic sealing.

By the ideal sealing joint (untraditional gland) the gland construction, based on advanced inapplicable earlier principle of hermetic sealing allowing in the long run for 10 times increase of a pump non stop operation time is meant.

Besides, the principle of hermetic sealing used in the project allows for constructive providing of constant automatic control for sealing serviceability and increasing on the order the specified time between inspections of the gland. In the construction the materials with high wear resistance and low friction coefficient are used.

Thus, the development, planned by the project, will provide essential reducing of working cost and the possibility of oil blowout by producing equipment by means of reliability improving of the proposed technical design, the efficiency and perspective of which are experimentally proved by preliminary researches, conducted by RIMP specialists.

During the fulfillment of the project the works connected with the constructive possible schemes studying of the proposed principle of hermetic sealing, investigation of the effect of physico-mechanical and granulometric properties of different materials on capability of hermetic pressure "transmission" under long term use of seals considering extreme temperature – time conditions of usage, design-experimental analysis and the choice of reliable construction variant will be conducted.

The project fulfillment by means of weapon specialists leads to their reorientation on research and development of technologies in peaceful purposes including environment protection, energy production increase. According to the project the work volume is 4383 mаn/days.

The technical approach and methodology will be based on the specialists experience accumulated while developing technologies, constructions and materials of special chemistry.

The pilot-industrial equipment, traditional methods of compositions optimization produced earlier will be used.

The result of the project fulfillment will be design documentation development, seal test sample production, and experimental verification of their advantages in natural conditions of use.

Scientific-technical and potential commercial value of the project consists in production of the ideal sealing device for oil production equipment, providing for qualitative advantages (compared with the existing ones) considering reliability, ecological safety and economical indexes of its large-scale application. The last is reached by:

  • reducing of energy consumption for friction overcoming in a seal;
  • reducing of labour consumption for current maintenance of a gland;
  • reducing of the replaced worn-out parts costs;
  • reducing of the rod well pumping devices detention (production volume increase).


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