Bently Pressurized Bearing Company
The Most Significant Development in Bearing Technology in the Last 100 Years
Rotating machinery has made tremendous strides over the last 100 years. Unfortunately, the bearing technology at the heart of this machinery has not kept pace. Most fluid-film bearings today are intentionally operated with partial lubrication at very low pressures - just enough to move the lubricant through the bearing's supply, cooling, and filtration system with adequate flow. Why? Because it was erroneously believed that full 360-degree lubrication and external pressurization led to bearing instability. Consequently, fluid-film bearings have relied on partial lubrication and very low pressures (typically below 25 psi) in their attempts to deal with instability. Additionally, very small length-to-diameter (L-to-D) ratios are used to limit the surface area of the bearing and its propensity to "whirl" and "whip" its lubricant.
Pressure - It Makes All The Difference
Until recently, few had challenged the assumptions of partial lubrication and essentially unpressurized bearings, even though these approaches were only partially successful in addressing instabilities. Not us. For the last decade we’ve been learning what happens when you fully lubricate a bearing and then pressurize1 it enough to force the lubricant to flow primarily along the shaft (forming an inherently stable axial support wedge), rather than the tendency of conventional low-pressure designs to pull fluid into rotational motion around the shaft (forming a circumferential support wedge which promotes instability). The result is a bearing with unsurpassed stability - an important benefit considering the predominance of machinery that continues to suffer from instability problems - and a bearing with a host of other advantages. We call it our Bently Pressurized Bearing - superior bearing technology for today’s, and tomorrow’s, machines.
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