Case studies

Omniseal® Spring-Energized Metal C-Seals
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Launch Vehicle Engine Turbopump

    Hilde Joosen
Space Leakage Control High Temperature High Pressure


A launch vehicle uses a turbopump that is driven by a hot gas turbine. Due to high levels of horsepower, RPM, flow rates and pressures in this system, specific design features, materials, and fabrication methods must be used to ensure high performance as well as space flight levels of reliability. For static sealing applications in this area, metal seals are used to prevent leakage of a fluid through a joint that has no relative motion of the mating surfaces.

Launch Vehicle Engine Turbopump
Launch Vehicle Turbopump


The sealing element is a complex and challenging component in the engine turbopump system, with hundreds of different seals such as metal seals being used for critical functionality. Typically, there is one pump for the fuel with hydrogen liquid or gas, and a second pump for the oxidizer with oxygen. All these liquids or gasses will then come together in the combustion chamber, which requires the highest level of efficient sealing. The lack of sealing control could cause improper operation or loss of hydrogen, leading to a potential fire or explosion. There may also be a loss of turbopump power, which means an aborted mission.


Omniseal® spring-energized metal C-Seal is a proven solution for this challenging application.

The seal has been used in many space programs for several decades, meeting the precise leakage requirement of this turbopump application in the range of 10-5 sccs.


Metal C-Seals ensure superior leakage performance, which ensures the stability of your turbopump operation.


  • Meets demanding leak rate

  • Low load/high spring back requirements



  • Omniseal® Spring-Energized Metal C-Seal


  • Engine


  • Inconel® 718 with silver plating & gold flash coating

Precision part

  • Custom Spring-Energized Turbopump Metal Seal

Technical details

  • Media: H2, O2

  • Temperature: Hot gas, 600°K

  • Leakage requirement: 10-5 sccs

  • Motion: static

  • Pressure: 145 psi (10 bar)

  • Diameters: Between 150 & 450 mm

Tags: Space Leakage Control High Temperature High Pressure