thermal oil rotary union / for satellite refueling systems
BU-12311 DSTI - Dynamic Sealing Technologies



  • Medium:

    for thermal oil

  • Applications:

    for satellite refueling systems

  • Pressure:

    50 psi

  • Rotational speed:

    1 rpm (6 rad.min-1)

  • Nominal size:

    1.06 in


DSTI specialized rotary unions were used by NASA for fluid transfer for an in-orbital refueling system during the final mission of the space shuttle Atlantis. In 2010, DSTI proposed the design for a compact rotary union to meet NASA requirements for a unique robotic satellite refueling system.

DSTI rotary union was designed to be exceptionally small, and the final solution had specialized components and seals suited for a microgravity environment with a smooth-bore custom O-ring interface.

After several months of vibration and thermal testing, when the refueling system team reported its achievement of the desired performance, this project got added to the list of hundreds of other challenges undertaken by DSTI.

The final mission of NASA's 30-year space shuttle program was aimed at reduction of risks and laying down of a foundation for future servicing of robots to extend the life of satellites orbiting Earth.