SKF has launched the SKF Generalized Bearing Life Model, a new bearing rating life model that is specifically designed to help engineers predict bearing life with greater accuracy. The company plans to showcase this, and other advances, at Hannover Messe 2015.
The new bearing rating life model will enable original equipment designers and end users to more closely match bearings to actual application conditions, enabling users to get the most life out of the bearings and save maintenance costs.
The current bearing life model is primarily calculated based on damage below the bearing’s surface. However, SKF has confirmed that today’s high quality bearings rarely fail because of sub-surface damage resulting from inadequate load capacity. They generally fail as a result of surface damage caused by such factors as contamination, inadequate lubrication, surface distress and wear.
As for products, connectivity takes center stage for SKF at Hannover. The company launched a variety of new products that boost mobility and connectivity in industrial applications.
SKF Enlight is a package that combines a mobile app with a Bluetooth-enabled sensor. It lets non-expert staff gather data such as vibration and temperature information, using standard mobile devices.
The package features three main elements: a mobile app entitled Data Collect, which turns a standard mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet into a data collection device; the Wireless Machine Condition Detector (WMCD), which is a sensor that measures vibration and temperature data – and relays it to Data Collect via Bluetooth; and ruggedized Atex Zone 1-compliant tablets and smartphones, if users need to collect data in hazardous areas with oil & gas, refining, chemicals and pharmaceuticals .
SKF Insight – a bearing health management technology – is now in several new industry projects. The technology, which uses a self-powered, wireless sensor in the bearing to provide instant condition monitoring data through the Internet, is undergoing trials in challenging projects in the wind turbine and rail industries.
In cooperation with the Swedish national rail operator (SJ), SKF Insight is now on a railway vehicle. This trial looks to demonstrate technical and commercial advantages; including the ability to improve the in-service availability of passenger rail vehicles, while reducing maintenance costs gradually.
SKF Insight monitors dynamic parameters such as vibration, temperature, lubrication condition and load, and informs the user when conditions are abnormal and can threaten to cause bearing damage. When it was launched, at Hannover 2013, SKF Insight was a technology concept – a way in which maintenance engineers might improve condition monitoring by keeping tabs on bearing health. Two years on, it is a fully functioning option running in customer pilots, capable of supplying data directly to diagnostic centers for better condition monitoring via the SKF Cloud using SKF @ptitude.