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Door Seal

Properly sealed doors are important to everyone. We use doors in our homes, our businesses, and in our automotive vehicles. Doors can be subjected to heating and cooling, wind and weather extremes, vibration, opening and closing forces, high and low pressures, and other unspecified abuse. Engineers must ensure that doors are designed to exert even pressure around the door perimeter to promote a leak-tight seal. In addition, hinges and latches must be correctly adjusted, and doors must be hung level and plumb for door seals to work effectively.

Fig 1: Door Seal Analysis, Real-time Pressure Profiling
Fig 1: Door Seal Analysis, Real-time Pressure Profiling

Unfortunately, many engineers design doors by trial and error. If the door seals leak, they make adjustments. In response to this, Sensor Products has developed Tactilus® door seal sensors to aid engineers in identifying interface pressures across door seal surfaces. The Tactilus® system is designed to allow the user to collect pressure position and magnitude data at user-selected locations across a door seal. Tactilus® works in both static and dynamic situations, where static refers to providing static individual readings and dynamic refers to measuring the pressure over time as it changes.

Tactilus® can collect 16 channels of data. This provides the user unprecedented flexibility and ease of use. Furthermore, the sensors are durable and last a long time. Available in free form and matrix configuration, the sensor elements are individually calibrated, sequentially serialized, and quality tested to ensure the highest repeatability and accuracy. In addition, the sensor assemblies feature ergonomic connectors, ensuring durable interconnection. Figure 1 illustrates Tactilus® being used to obtain a pressure profile of a car door.

Jeffrey G. Stark, CEO of Sensor Products has stated, The free form philosophy is to empower the user to select the precise location where they require data collection rather than the constrained matrix inherent in traditional fixed tactile surface sensors. Free Form was created to maximize both data collection efficiency and value.

The door seal sensor system utilizes piezoresistive sensor elements that report pressure response between two contacting surfaces. The collected data is transmitted to proprietary software where dynamic pressure distribution is displayed in a variety of images and graphs. Images may be magnified for region of interest viewing, and the software can display statistical analysis of average, minimum, and maximum pressures. Data collected by Tactilus® can easily be exported into a text Excel file for individual frame and trend analysis in virtually any third-party software. The Tactilus® system comes complete with sensor element(s), data hub, USB connector and Tactilus® software.

The data obtained by Tactilus® is useful to modelers and researchers attempting to predict the performance of door seals. The pressure data obtained has been used in computational fluid dynamics to verify the results of finite element analysis models.

Many industries have benefited by the use of Tactilus®. This includes home and business construction, the automobile and trucking industry, refrigeration and heating, aircraft, aerospace, and vacuum equipment. Numerous technical publications have documented the use of Tactilus® and Fuji Prescale®, a pressure indicating film, as useful in the research and modeling of door seals.