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Research Papers: Flows in Complex Systems

Computational Analysis of Foil Air Journal Bearings Using a Runtime-Efficient Segmented Foil Model

[+] Author and Article Information
Tim Leister

Institute of Engineering Mechanics,
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology,
Karlsruhe 76131, Germany
e-mail: tim.leister@kit.edu

Christoph Baum

Institute of Engineering Mechanics,
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology,
Karlsruhe 76131, Germany
e-mail: christoph.baum@kit.edu

Wolfgang Seemann

Institute of Engineering Mechanics,
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology,
Karlsruhe 76131, Germany
e-mail: wolfgang.seemann@kit.edu

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Fluids Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF FLUIDS ENGINEERING. Manuscript received September 8, 2016; final manuscript received August 16, 2017; published online November 7, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Olivier Coutier-Delgosha.

J. Fluids Eng 140(2), 021115 (Nov 07, 2017) (8 pages) Paper No: FE-16-1585; doi: 10.1115/1.4037985 History: Received September 08, 2016; Revised August 16, 2017

This contribution is concerned with the development and the implementation of a foil air journal bearing model. For this purpose, the numerical procedure solving the Reynolds equation for compressible fluids has to be coupled to a compliant foil model. The presented beam-based approach is supposed to reproduce most of the experimentally known particularities in the mechanical behavior of the foil structure, while being at least as runtime-efficient as the commonly used simple elastic foundation model. The developed modeling approach will be validated by comparing simulation results to data found with a more complex reference model. In the analysis part, most notably, the top foil compliance is shown to deteriorate the load-carrying capacity of air bearings. Moreover, the influence of the top foil compliance on the dynamics of a rigid rotor supported by two foil air journal bearings will be discussed.

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References

Heshmat, H. , Walowit, J. A. , and Pinkus, O. , 1983, “ Analysis of Gas-Lubricated Foil Journal Bearings,” ASME J. Lubr. Technol., 105(4), pp. 647–655. [CrossRef]
Baum, C. , Hetzler, H. , and Seemann, W. , 2015, “ On the Stability of Balanced Rigid Rotors in Air Foil Bearings,” 11th International Conference on Vibrations in Rotating Machines (SIRM), Magdeburg, Germany, Feb. 23–25, p. 52. http://www.sirm2015.ovgu.de/sirm2015_media/Beitr%C3%A4ge/ID52.pdf
San Andrés, L. , and Kim, T. H. , 2009, “ Analysis of Gas Foil Bearings Integrating FE Top Foil Models,” Tribol. Int., 42(1), pp. 111–120. [CrossRef]
Szeri, A. Z. , 2010, Fluid Film Lubrication, 2nd ed., Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK. [CrossRef] [PubMed] [PubMed]
Walowit, J. A. , and Anno, J. N. , 1975, Modern Developments in Lubrication Mechanics, Applied Science Publishers, London.

Figures

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Fig. 1

Sketch of the foil air journal bearing model

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Fig. 2

Free body diagram of the journal

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Fig. 3

Configuration of the compliant foil structure

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Fig. 4

Sketch of the segmented foil model

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Fig. 5

Sketch of the reference foil model

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Fig. 6

Foil deformation (using segmented foil model)

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Fig. 7

Pressure distribution (using segmented foil model)

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Fig. 8

Foil deformation along the bearing centerline for different foil models

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Fig. 9

Film thickness along the bearing centerline for different foil models

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Fig. 10

Pressure distribution in axial direction and along the bearing centerline for different foil models

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Fig. 11

Effect of the foil structure on the load-carrying capacity

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Fig. 12

Influence of the top foil stiffness on the journal's trajectory for (a) nominal top foil thickness and (b) reduced top foil thickness

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