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Synthetic Lubricants in Hydrodynamic Journal Bearings: Experimental Results
Luleå University of Technology, Division of Machine Elements.
2011 (English)In: Tribology letter, ISSN 1023-8883, E-ISSN 1573-2711, Vol. 42, no 1, 109-115 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Synthetic lubricants and additives have seen many major improvements in recent years. However, very little is known about the performance peculiarities of these new lubricants in actual machines. To fill this gap, a new full-scale hydro-dynamic journal bearing test rig has been constructed to evaluate the behavior of conventional and new bearing designs, synthetic lubricants and variations in operating parameters. This test rig’s bearing has diameter 180 mm with measuring capabilities including continuous film thickness and film pressure as well as temperature. The new machine was used to compare a number of synthetic lubricants to mineral based lubricants, finding that performance of the synthetic lubricants was superior to their mineral based counterparts of much higher viscosity grade. These tests showed that high viscosity index (VI) synthetic lubricants had higher viscosity in the region of maximum pressure and lower viscosity elsewhere in the bearing than similar mineral based lubricants. This reduction in viscosity in low pressure zones was found to produce a measurable reduction in friction and power loss in the bearing system. This paper provides comparative performance results of several formulations of current and future turbine oils from measurements of losses, oil film thickness, and temperature under a range of operating parameters. Lubricants tested include ISO VG68 and VG32 mineral based turbine oils (VG68 and VG32), ISO VG32 synthetic ester based oil (SE32), two ISO VG22 synthetic ester based oils (SE22 and SV22), and ISO VG15 synthetic ester based oil (SE15). It was found that SE32 and VG68 provided similar performance at lower speeds while SV22 provided similar performance to VG68 at the highest speed. Likewise, SE22 and SV22 provided similar performance to VG32 at low speeds while SE15 provided similar performance to VG32 at medium to higher speeds. Generally, the results demonstrate the potential for replacing mineral based lubricants with high performance synthetic lubricants of significantly lower viscosity grade without sacrificing bearing safety.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 42, no 1, 109-115 p.
Keyword [en]
Chemistry and Materials Science
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-79903DOI: 10.1007/s11249-011-9753-2ISI: 000288252900012OAI: diva2:495804
QC 20120210Available from: 2012-02-09 Created: 2012-02-09 Last updated: 2012-02-10Bibliographically approved

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Glavatskih, Sergei
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