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Ultra high-speed ball bearings for hybrid vehicle motors and power generators

14 February 2012

Automotive manufacturers have a growing need for ultra high-speed rotation technologies to secure output power while they continue scaling down the size and weight of drive motors and power generators in order to improve fuel economy in next-generation hybrid vehicle systems. NSK has developed ball bearings that enable this ultra high-speed rotation by greatly reducing friction. These bearings permit speeds of 30,000rpm - 50% faster than conventional bearings. Here are the key product features:

Improved lubrication - a plate to control the flow rate of lubricants is installed at the lubricant port of the bearing module. The plate ensures oil is supplied to the inner ring, where lubrication tends to become depleted as a result of the high centrifugal forces.

Reduced friction - optimised ball diameter and groove dimensions inside the bearing module control friction and thus heatgeneration, even under ultra high-speed rotation, preventing seizing. Cage vibration is damped by adjusting the gap between the cage, balls and inner ring, thereby reducing wear at contact points.

Greater durability - the annular part of the cage has been thickened and the cage strengthened to prevent deformation by the centrifugal forces applied to the cage during extreme high-speed rotation.

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