January 21st, 2016
Saint-Gobain Seals presented a technical paper at the SAE International Joint Technical Committee event titled, “Cold Temperature Hydraulic Seals for Aerospace Hydraulic Systems,” during the A-5B Struts and Couplings and A-6C2 Seals panels, and A-5/A-6 Joint Committee meeting. The technical paper discussed development and testing initiatives to design a high pressure hydraulic sealing solution as part of Phase I of a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) solicited program. The SBIR program supports technological innovation through the investment of Federal research funds, encouraging businesses to engage in Federal Research and Development (R&D).
The SBIR solicitation addresses the need for a dynamic sealing solution that operates down to temperatures of -100°F (-73°C) due to advancement of unmanned air vehicles and demanding requirements at higher altitudes, which causes the hydraulic system to become cold soaked and prone to leakage. Saint-Gobain Seals’ technical paper detailed the testing of several elastomer seals (o-rings with back-up rings and T-seals) and their OmniSeal® seals by a third party company. Compared to elastomer seals, the study showed that OmniSeal® seals retained pressure at lower temperature up to -100F (-73C), which was the limit of the test campaign. Since the seals were not limited by cold temperature limitations, other properties included low temperature retraction (TR10), compression set or compression set recovery and dissimilar thermal response. Final test results identified the technical feasibility of using the OmniSeal® seal design to maintain sealing in a AS-4716 seal gland during extended cold soaking at -100°F (-73°C) and return to ambient temperature.
Saint-Gobain Seals not only presented a technical paper but also participated during the table-top exhibition, displaying their OmniSeal® seal products, which have been extensively used in many aerospace critical applications such as jet engines, APUs, flight controls, landing gear and space vehicles. They recently developed an extremely large cryogenic seal (more than six feet wide) for the NASA Space Launch System (SLS) project, Exploration Mission 1 (EM-1) -- a high-performance achievement based on the SLS’s future demanding payloads. The OmniSeal® RACO™ cryogenic seal marks the continuation of Saint-Gobain Seals’ fifty years of providing sealing and polymer products for space exploration and their collaboration on NASA projects.
As with their cryogenic seal on the NASA Exploration Mission 1 (which handles extreme pressure and temperature conditions), Saint-Gobain Seals has been proactively attending industry events such as the SAE event to share with the aerospace community other demanding applications their OmniSeal® seals are best utilized such as the aerospace hydraulic systems aforementioned.
Related to this topic: Aerospace