Due to recent advances in rare-earth technologies, application of permanent magnets has gained a new interest. As bearing elements, permanent magnets offer important advantages, such as the noticeable reduction of friction losses and the capability of achieving high speeds. A tapered geometry is investigated by means of finite element analysis and by a purpose-developed software based on magnetostatic integral equations. On the basis of the equivalent currents method, some basic relations have also been obtained that permit to study the influence of the magnetization angles, once four 'geometry' vectors are known. The present study may be used as a starting point for an optimization procedure on the shape and magnetization directions of permanent magnet bearings.
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