The usual spot for an auxiliary power unit (APU) is at the back of the airplane, providing electrical power on the ground when actual engines cannot be used. This system controls the air conditioning and basic lighting of the aircraft when on the ground. It is sometimes referred to as "the backup powerhouse of an airplane” as it can be used as a back-up source of energy in case of the unlikely loss of the main power generators in mid-air. As such, the APU is a critical part and supporting component in the air as well.
Although the system is small in size, weight and fuel consumption, it does endure a reasonable amount of wear and tear. Saint-Gobain Seals provides design solutions to address these long wear factors as well as making them compatible with a wide variety of particulates, contaminants and droplets, ideal for use in ground air applications, which tend to be less pure than high altitude air. Our OmniLip® rotary seals are used in shaft sealing applications and our OmniSeal® seals are used for static and dynamic applications for optimal sealing control. High-temperature and lightweight Meldin® material helps with tolerance control and can replace metal components, significantly reducing the weight of an APU. Our customers are given lifetime confidence when using our parts in APU areas such as the turbine shaft, air inlet vane, internal and accessory gearbox and accessory drive shaft and units.