Air foil bearings (AFBs) have been explored for various micro- to midsized turbomachinery for decades, and many successful applications of the AFBs to small turbomachinery were also reported. As machine size increases, however, one of the critical technical challenges of AFBs is a wear on the top foil and rotor during starts/stops due to relatively heavy rotor weight compared with the size of the bearing. The wear on the foil increases with greater loading during starts/stops as a function of the coating performance. The hybrid air foil bearing (HAFB), which combines hydrodynamic pressure with hydrostatic lift, can help to minimize/eliminate the wear problem during the start/stops. This paper reports design and preliminary test results of hydrodynamically preloaded three-pad HAFB aimed for midsized airborne turbomachinery applications. Designed HAFB was manufactured and comprehensive parametric design simulations were performed using time-domain orbit simulations and frequency-domain linear perturbation analyses to predict performances of manufactured bearing. Static stiffness was measured at zero running speed to investigate the load capacity of hydrostatic operation when rotor is at stationary. The measured static stiffness showed good agreement with predictions.
Design of Three-Pad Hybrid Air Foil Bearing and Experimental Investigation on Static Performance at Zero Running Speed
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Kim, D., and Lee, D. (August 27, 2010). "Design of Three-Pad Hybrid Air Foil Bearing and Experimental Investigation on Static Performance at Zero Running Speed." ASME. J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power. December 2010; 132(12): 122504. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4001066
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