Because most axial compressors are in air service, most are equipped with labyrinth type end seals. There are no interstage seals in the machines with unshrouded stator blades. The balance piston seal, a labyrinth type, is the only internal seal. There is no reason that axials cannot use some of the other seals as described in Chapter 5, such as the controlled leakage or the mechanical contact type, if the gas being handled by the compressor needs a more positive seal. If there is any prob lem at all, it will be that the seal rubbing velocity will be higher due to the larger shaft and relatively high speed. In the past, where axials have been used in process gas service, these problems were overcome.

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