Tribology Letters

, 44:335 | Cite as

Theoretical and Experimental Analysis of a Laser Textured Thrust Bearing

  • Victor Gabriel MarianEmail author
  • Dumitru Gabriel
  • Gunter Knoll
  • Salvatore Filippone
Original Paper


In this article, a laser partially textured thrust bearing is theoretically and experimentally analyzed. An adiabatic model is developed in order to theoretically investigate the performances of the bearing. The bearing sample is partially textured both in radial and circumferential direction using the laser texturing process. The performance of the bearing (fluid film thickness and friction torque) is evaluated on a specially adapted test rig and the experimental results are compared with the theoretical model. A good agreement is found between the theoretical model and the experimental data. Also a comparison between a laser textured bearing and a bearing textured using the photolithographic method is presented.


Hydrodynamic lubrication Hydrodynamic bearings Surface modification Thermal effects in hydrodynamics 

List of Symbols


Textured width of a bearing pad


Total width of a bearing pad


Specific heat


Adiabatic number, \(\frac{2 U \eta_{\rm i} \beta L_{\rm tot}}{\rho c h_{\rm m}^2}\)


Load carrying capacity


Axial force


Dimensionless load carrying capacity, \(\frac{F h_{\rm m}^2}{\mu U B_{{\rm tot}} L_{\rm tot}^2}\)


Friction force

\(\overline{F}_{\rm f}\)

Dimensionless friction force, \(\frac{F_{\rm f} h_{\rm m}}{\mu U B_{\rm tot} L_{\rm tot}}\)


Film thickness


Dimple depth


Minimal film thickness


Dimensionless film depth, h/h m

\(\overline{h}_{\rm c}\)

Dimensionless dimple depth, h c/h m


Width of bearing oil supply channels at mean radius


Cell dimension


Textured length of bearing pad


Total length of bearing pad


Friction torque

\(\overline{M}_{\rm f}\)

Dimensionless friction torque, \({\frac{M_{\rm f} h_{\rm m}}{\eta_{\rm i} U L_{\rm tot} B_{\rm tot} r_{\rm i}}}\)


Rotation speed of runner


Number of bearing pads


Number of dimples on each row


Number of dimples on each column


Local pressure


Dimensionless pressure, \(\frac{p h_{\rm m}^2}{\eta_{\rm i} U L_{\rm tot}}\)


Dimple radius

\(\overline{r}_{\rm c}\)

Dimensionless dimple radius, r c/h m


Outer radius of bearing


Inner radius of bearing

\(\overline{r}_{\rm e}\)

Outer dimensionless radius of bearing, r e/r i




Inlet lubricant temperature


Velocity on x direction


Velocity of runner at mean radius


Velocity on z direction


Dimensionless x coordinate, x/L tot


dimensionless z coordinate, z/L tot


Fluid density


Dimple area density, \(\frac{\pi r_{\rm c}^2}{L^2}\)


Textured fraction on length, L t / L tot


Textured fraction on width, B t / B tot


Viscosity–temperature coefficient


Fluid dynamic viscosity


Fluid dynamic viscosity at inlet temperature, T i


Dimensionless dynamic viscosity, η/ηi


Shear stress


Friction coefficient, F f/F


Dimensionless friction coefficient, \(\overline{F}_{\rm f}/ \overline{F}\)



Financial support for the study described in this article was provided by the German Academic Exchange Service and Sectoral Operational Programme Human Resources Development 2007–2013 of the Romanian Ministry of Labour, Family, and Social Protection POSDRU/89/1.5/S/62557. The authors express their gratitude to Mr. Thomas Smetana of INA Schaeffler for providing the bearing specimens and to prof. Mircea D. Pascovici for his precious advices.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victor Gabriel Marian
    • 1
    Email author
  • Dumitru Gabriel
    • 2
  • Gunter Knoll
    • 3
  • Salvatore Filippone
    • 4
  1. 1.Laboratory of Machine Elements and TribologyUniversity Politehnica of BucharestBucharestRomania
  2. 2.BCI GroupGrenchenSwitzerland
  3. 3.Institute for Engineering Design and Machine ElementsUniversity of KasselKasselGermany
  4. 4.Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Rome Tor VergataRomaItaly

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