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Piston Rings

Functions and Operating Principle
- sealing the combustion chamber to the crankcase (compression
- sealing the crankcase to the combustion chamber (oil control rings)
- regulating the lubricating oil at the cylinder face
- heat conduction from the piston to the cylinder wall
- Piston rings must have a split at one point (the ring gap). The gap
clearance of the
installed ring must be small (leakage point), however it may never be
zero (seize).

Additionally. .. gas forces. frictional forces). if. the piston rings are pressed against the cylinder wall by mechanical pre-stress to guarantee sealing during starting and to avoid vibration in case of high speeds. the piston ring mass force is higher than the resultant from gas and frictional force. .The gas pressure provides the sealing by forcing the compression rings towards the cylinder liner . subsequently the piston ring can lift off of the cylinder wall.Piston rings generally rotate during engine operation. .During a combustion cycle. due to the potential for ring vibrations. These vibrations can result. -The mass of the sealing rings should not be too high. This condition causes the ring to lift prematurely from the lower groove side and reduces the gas pressure. the contact of the piston ring changes back and forth from the lower and upper ring-groove (mass forces. shortly before combustion top dead centre.

. such as the conical taperface and the inside bevel.Piston Ring Designs .Compression rings typically have a rectangular cross-section.Rings that differ from this simple form. can improve the run-in process by minimizing the initial contact area. .

. . . several types of supporting springs are used. .To increase the pressure force of the oil control rings (desirable due to missing gas pressure support).. such as expanders. link springs (for the T-flex ring).The stepped ring (nose ring) not only provides a sealing effect but also a distinct oil control effect. and special springs (for spiral-type expanders).In case of coke formation the full keystone ring (double trapezoid ring) is mainly intended to avoid ring clogging in the trapezoid groove.Oil control rings generally have a circular groove in the centre of their cylindrical sliding surface which are used to lead the controlled oil to the bottom of the ring groove.

even though its elasticity is worse and a running surface must be applied due to the poor running properties.Steel is used only if the mechanical strength requirements are extreme. and is almost exclusively used as a ring material.easy production .good running properties (low wear.Piston Ring Materials and Production The main requirements of piston ring materials are: . .high elasticity and mechanical strength . . low friction) .These requirements are well met by grey cast iron.


is hard-chromium-plated. .If protection against stains from baking and jamming of the ring is required.. which is subject to the highest degree of wear.Generally. the piston ring running surface is filled or coated with molybdenum. the sliding surface of the upper piston ring. The chromium-plated ring surface is typically ground to a crown shape . which has a high melting point (2620 deg C) and good thermal conductivity.

the following defects can occur: .Typical Piston Ring Defects If the piston rings are not properly designed or are operated under invalid conditions.