Plain bearings can demonstrate their advantages to the full in marine applications and in the solar and water power sectors, as they have been optimized for the combination of slow swivel movements and high forces that these applications involve. In addition, plain bearings are highly suitable for operation in media such as water and are also suitable for dry running.
Schaeffler has systematically expanded its range of plain bearing solutions. In addition to maintenance-free INA plain bearings with ELGOGLIDE® that have proven themselves for several years, the product range also includes metal-polymer composite plain bearings and INA plain bearings with ELGOTEX®.
INA plain bearings with ELGOTEX® WA specifically for marine applications
INA plain bearings with ELGOTEX® WA are resistant to sea water and have been specially developed for use as rudder and stabilizer bearings in marine applications, for which they are also certified according to MCM-0112 by Germanischer Lloyd. This design is specifically suitable for water lubrication and therefore does not require a complicated seal of the kind required by conventional rolling and plain bearings.
The ELGOTEX® WA material comprises two layers that are wound onto each other. The internal sliding layer, which is embedded in a resin matrix with fillers and solid lubricants, is made of continuous synthetic and PTFE fibers. The external layer also comprises continuous glass fibers (glass filament) in epoxy resin. A specific winding angle stabilizes the layers, thereby significantly increasing the strength of the bush. A standard range of INA plain bearings with ELGOTEX® WA will be available shortly. Special dimensions deviating from this range are available on request.
A clear advantage of INA plain bearings with ELGOTEX® WA is the increased load carrying capacity compared to the products that are available on the market for use in marine applications. While the standard thus far has been a maximum contact pressure of 10 N/mm2, ELGOTEX® WA can support loads of up to 25 N/mm2. Germanischer Lloyd has certified ELGOTEX® WA for loads of up to 15 N/mm² in marine applications.
The higher power density ensures that the operating life of bearings with ELGOTEX® WA can be significantly increased while maintaining the same operating conditions or, alternatively, that bearings with ELGOTEX® WA can support higher loads while maintaining the same operating life values. This opens the door for new design options for downsizing and for reducing the number of different bearing variants used in an application.
Because the plain bearing is self-lubricating in water, there is no need to use oil or grease, and no seals are required. This means a major benefit in ecological terms when used in water.
One plain bearing - many possibilities
The combination of materials makes bearings with ELGOTEX® WA resistant to corrosive media and allows a constantly low friction value with low wear and absolute freedom from maintenance. These bearings have a high radial load carrying capacity, can be used for axial movements, and are insensitive to shocks and edge pressures.
They are not sealed, but can be supplied with internal seals for protection against abrasive contamination if required. In addition to their use in marine applications, INA plain bearings with ELGOTEX® WA are also suitable for use in ocean engineering, hydraulic steel constructions, hydroelectric power plants, and in pumps and turbines.
Source: Schaeffler AG