An Invention of the Slip/Non-slip Roller Bearing

Project: Research

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A roller bearing basically consists of (i) inner and outer raceways, (ii) rollers, and (iii) a retainer. The function of the retainer is to space out the rollers. My idea is to remove the retainer. As such, more number of rollers can be installed between the raceways. Thus, the bearing becomes more rigid, space-saving, and supports much heavier radial loads. Retainerless bearings are available (termed as full-complement bearings in the market), and utilized for high load but fairly low speed applications. Two adjacent rollers sliding against the other with the same speed but in opposite directions (zero-entrainment-velocity, ZEV, condition), theoretically, generates NO hydrodynamic effect, i.e. leading to serious friction and wear problems. Recent studies confirmed that using an oleophobic surface as one of the bounding surfaces in elastohydrodynamic lubricated contacts, the overall friction can be reduced by the sliding of the lubricant on the oleophobic surface (boundary slip). We have recently applied the same concept to a ZEV contact. It is amazing that full hydrodynamic lubricating films are successfully generated at ZEV conditions with a contact of oleophobic and oleophilic surfaces. Hence, a novel design of full-complement bearings alternately incorporating slip and non-slip rolling elements is devised (Fig. 3).


Project number9667154
Effective start/end date1/06/17 → …