Understanding the different types of bearings and their advantages

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From a small pressing machine to a huge power plant, almost every piece of industrial equipment in existence relies on bearings in some kind of make, model, shape and form.

As we wrote in an earlier blog, the global sale of the likes of Sferax linear bearings are expected to rise significantly in the next few years, driven by stark growth in developing industries.

Given the importance, imperativeness and rise in sales of bearings, let’s take a look what this essential industrial component is and what the different types of bearings are.

Put simply, a bearing is a mechanical device which guides or confines the motion of a machine by supporting the moving parts. The principle purpose of a bearing is to reduce friction amongst components with a minimum loss of energy whilst controlling the rate of wear.

There are two most common types of bearings – linear bearings and rotary bearings.

Rotary bearings

Rotary bearings are designed to assist an object in moving round a central point. They can include both oscillation, whereby there is an oscillating motion between two separate components, and constrained one-direction rotation.

By helping to reduce friction between moving parts, rotary bearings are used in a number of applications, such as in machine shafts and vehicle axles.

Linear bearings

As Agro Engineers points out, Linear bearings are used to permit motion in a straight line. This type of bearing provides a low friction motion along a single axis.

Sferax, linear bearings manufacturers, world-renowned for producing linear ball bearings, continues to develop the highest quality bearings at competitive prices.

There are other types of bearings, including fluid bearings, magnetic bearings and flexure bearings.

Fluid bearings

When fluid bearings are required the load is typically carried by a gas or liquid. They are normally used when an application requires high precision, high speed or high loads.

Magnetic bearings

Magnetic bearings are employed when a load is carried by a magnetic field, most often in electrical meters to measure power consumption.

Flexure bearings

As their name suggests, flexure bearings are used when the load is required to bend and are typically one part that joins another.

The advantages of bearings

We know that bearings are a vital component of most machinery and industries but what exactly are their advantages?

As Agro Engineers maps out, one advantage of bearings is their ability to support loads and high speeds of rotation. They provide low friction and accurate performance under fluctuating loads and speeds. Bearings have a high load carrying capacity and can operate under extreme conditions of performance and speed. Another advantage of bearings is that they have little operational wear, require simple methods of lubrication and are “inherently precision mechanisms.”

Quality bearings such as Sferax linear bearings are available from YB Components Ltd.

Get in touch with YB Components today for all your industrial parts requirements and for a fast, reliable delivery service.