Influence of Viscosity and Magnetoviscous Effect on the Performance of a Magnetic Fluid Seal in a Water Environment

The magnetic fluid seal is one of the most successful applications of magnetic fluids. The theory of magnetic fluid seals in liquid environments has not been developed. This work mainly presents an experimental study of the influence of viscosity and magnetoviscous effects on the performance of a magnetic fluid seal in a water environment. Three engine oil–based magnetic fluids of different viscosities and similar saturation magnetization values were prepared and a multistage magnetic seal structure was designed. The magnetoviscous effect of the magnetic fluids under different working conditions was measured with an advanced rotational rheometer. An experimental platform and a multistage magnetic seal structure were designed for the critical pressure value and durability tests. The experimental results show that the viscosity of a magnetic fluid is a decisive factor in its sealing performance under a water environment and a discussion is presented that can explain the experimental results qualitatively.