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The wrong election of a seal could have terrible consequences

Mar 27, 2017 Category: Products
O-rings for gas

If there is any gas, choose RGD, ED Resistant or AED seals

The O-ring, the most universal seal, is the most used seal in fluid-tights because of its excellent effectiveness-cost relationship. Simple as it may be, it can also be manufactured in many different materials and it has a wide range of uses. When it comes to choose the most suitable material, the fluid to be tightened and the temperature are elements of paramount importance to make the good choice. By the same taken, History has shown us that no failure must be allowed.

NASA’s Challenger Space Shuttle could be one of the most well-known and tragic cases, when it broke apart 73 seconds into its flight due to the wrong choice of an O-ring. The seals used in the shuttle were FKM seals, and they were not designed to fly under unusually cold conditions as in this launch, so the seals lost their elasticity. As a result, seals lost their capacity to return to their original shape after the foreseen movement and this led to the disaster.

Nowadays, more and more clients ask us for O-rings for different fields (such as pharmaceutical, aeronautic, chemist, biomedicine, drinking water, food, gas industry…) and applications with high standards. Indeed, we just want to highlight in this post the consequences of the gas that may result in because of a wrong choice, as high pressure applications need the right seal for being efficient.

The term RDG (Rapid Gas Decompression), also known as ED (Explosive Decompression), is one of the main causes for tight failures when using seals, especially in many high pressure processes. It is a phenomenon that occurs when a pressurized gas reaches the outside very quickly and makes rubber seals from the equipment fail.

To avoid this risk, at JIOrings we offer RGD, ED Resistant or AED (Anti-Explosive Decompression) O-rings which are specifically manufactured to prevent this failure from happening and endure the quick gas decompression.  The most commonly used material for RGD certified O-rings is Viton® or FKM, but they can also be manufactured with different materials, such as HNBR, Aflas® or FFKM.