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Angular contact ball bearings

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SKF Explorer Series angular contact ball bearings are designed to maximise the effects of lubrication and minimise the effects of friction, wear and contamination.

According to SKF , they are so advanced they redefine design and maintenance limits. Not only can they accommodate higher loads and higher speeds, they have an average three times longer service life under poor lubrication and contaminated conditions.

SKF marketing manager Svein Stroemsness said the bearings were specifically for pump and compressor applications, as these were probably two of the most demanding applications where angular contact ball bearings were used.

“We new if we could make these bearings perform better in these applications they would provide superior performance in almost any other application."

Each component of the SKF Explorer Series angular contact ball bearing was re-engineered and new procedures were developed to consistently manufacture to a new standard of excellence.

"SKF wanted to improve temperature stability, make our bearings less susceptible to failures caused by contamination and improve the bearings' service life under marginal lubrication conditions.

“To do this we had to start at the very beginning of the process - specifying the steel - and make improvements to each critical area up to and including final packaging," Stroemsness said.

"And in addition to this new technology, we have upgraded our manufacturing processes."

Improvements include:

* Cleaner steel. SKF uses an ultra-pure steel with fewer impurities. "SKF metallurgists were an integral part of the re-design process," said Stroemsness. "Not only did they influence the composition of the steel but they maximised the surface of all components to provide superior performance."

* Unique heat treatment process. SKF developed a unique heat treat process that optimises the bearing's resistance to damage caused by heat. "Our unique process optimises the bearing's resistance to damage and heat stabilises the bearing up to 150°," Stroemsness said. "This provides a more durable raceway that is less sensitive to spalling and the damage caused by contaminates."

* Optimisation of surface finishes. "By optimising the surface finish on all critical component surfaces, SKF scientists were able to maximise the effectiveness of lubrication. By doing this, they were able to reduce wear, decrease heat generated by the bearing and enable the bearing to operate better even under marginal lubrication conditions," says Stoemsness.

* Optimisation of raceway geometry. "Changes made to the internal geometry of the raceways, have enabled SKF to reduce stress concentrations within the bearing. This not only allows the bearing to run smoother, but also allows the bearing to accommodate higher axial loads," says Stroemsness.

While new generation Explorer Series bearings look like any other SKF angular contact or bearing their performance is light years ahead, Stroemsness said.

"For end users, Explorer Series angular contact ball bearings will provide substantially longer service life, even under the most difficult operating conditions."

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