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Horizontal Sleeve Bearings

Key Words: Bearing; Bush; Sleeve; Horizontal; Generator; Hydrogenerator; Turbogenerator; Tachogenerator; Induction; Synchronous; Direct Current Classification: Component Natural Cooling The term natural cooling means that the area of thermal exchange around the bearing is enough to transfer the heat generated by viscous friction of the oil film between shaft and bearing liner.

Figure 1 Typical assembly of a sleeve bearing The oil is agitated by the oil ring which in contact with the oil storaged in the bearing compartment, makes the oil circulate and ensure enough amount of oil to form the oil film on the rotor shaft. The oil replacement interval specified by manufacturers is 8000 hours. Theoretically, considering there is no metal to metal contact between shaft and bearing liner, bearing liner can be considered infinite. Due to that, maintenance of these bearings consists of replacing the oil within the required viscosity.

Fig.2 Bearing liner and oil ring Water cooled

A water cooled system with the application of a serpentine inside the oil compartment of the bearings is actually required when the peripheral speed is quite high. However, lubrication is enough and the heat generation is excessive or the shaft temperature is high. For this type of cooling, plenty amount of water is required so as to ensure proper operation of the system under required conditions. The specified oil exchange interval is also 8000 hours as this lubrication system is the same as the natural cooling system. With independent oil cooling system An independent oil cooling system (lubrication through an external oil circulation system) is actually required when the lubrication with the application of an oil ring can no longer be applied due to excessive peripheral speed or when losses cause by friction and/or heat transfer through the shaft require an oil cooling provided by an independent oil circulation system. On this type of cooling, the oil exchange interval can be increased to 20,000 hours as the oil is usually filtered.

Figure 3 Typical hydraulic unit for oil circulation or pressurization Horizontal Sleeve Bearing with Oil Pressurization System
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Low speed The bearing usually requires an oil pressurization system when need to operate at a quite low speed (below 10 rpm) or a motor starting quite slow, affecting the oil film that protects the motor shaft. On this case, pressure must be enough to lift the shaft over the bearing.

Specific pressure excessively high This normally occurs when a flywheel or a turbine is coupled to the motor shaft end where the pressure on the bearing is excessively high.

Horizontal Sleeve Bearing with Axial Thrust When axial thrusts are required, bearings with axial supports are used so as to withstand such thrusts. Based on the thrust required and on the peripheral speed, these supports vary in size and quantity.