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KEEPING THE WATER OUT – development of a new flexible gaiter

15th August 2015

KEEPING THE WATER OUT – development of a new flexible gaiter

A RECENT PROJECT has been the development of a new flexible gaiter for gun turret sealing. Rubber does not behave like other engineering materials such as metals or concrete. This means finite element analysis cannot be used to model strain in order to show how complex three-dimensional elastomeric structures will distort under load.

Checkmate Flexible Engineering advised the client that the only way to understand the cause of premature failures on the current part would be to build a moving test rig. In order to replicate all operating conditions, it also had to be capable of being pressurised or subjected to vacuum and flexing over thousands of cycles. CFE staff designed and built the rig that was used to show the cause of failure and develop a new part that is now on test at sea.