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The rise of recycled materials in bearing manufacturing

29 February 2024

Here, Chris Johnson, Managing Director of SMB Bearings, explores how integrating recycled materials into bearing manufacturing can reduce environmental impact and promote a circular economy.

The conventional production of steel – a key component in the manufacture of bearings – involves significant energy consumption to heat furnaces to high temperatures, as well as to mine iron ore and other raw materials. This leads to habitat destruction and resource depletion.

Recycling steel, on the other hand, typically requires less energy, as it involves melting and reshaping existing steel. By transitioning to recycled steel, bearing manufacturers can lower their greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to the conservation of natural resources. In fact, reusing scrap steel, instead of using virgin ore, reduces CO2 emissions by 58 percent, according to Stena Recycling.

The process of refining and manufacturing new steel from raw materials is energy intensive. Scrap metal from end-of-life products or industrial processes represents a significant source of steel that can be repurposed. Incorporating recycled steel into bearing manufacturing helps divert scrap metal from landfills.

Read the full article in DPA's March issue

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