Thrust Bearing is a type of rotary bearings that provide high load capacity in hostile environment. This type of bearings are designed to work parallel to the shaft and they deliver high axial load capacity yet different kinds of Thrust Bearings with different design aspects and dimension deliver different performance, load carrying capacity and precision. There are several different types and subcategories of Thrust Bearings yet they can be categorized in two major types.
Applications of Thrust Bearings
As different types of Thrust Bearings deliver different performance, precision and load capacity, they have different applications. Usually ball Thrust Bearings are used in industries like aerospace, chemical industry and utilities while roller Thrust Bearings are suitable for agriculture and other industries where high load capacity is needed.
Material used in Thrust Bearings
Numerous materials are used to produce Thrust Bearings while some of the most common materials are stainless steel and ceramic. Usually the cage is made of brass, polyamide or steel depending on the application and needs. In order to increase the overall performance of the apparatus, special lubrication is used as well as special coatings, seals and shields to protect it from dust and humidity.
Types of Thrust Bearings
The two major types of Thrust Bearings are ball Thrust Bearings and roller Thrust Bearings, both of these types are used in different applications and equipments because of their different performance, durability, precision and load carrying capacity. Ball Thrust Bearings are used to deliver high performance but they tend to carry lesser axial load than their counterpart. On the other hand, Roller Thrust Bearings are used in applications and machines where high load carrying capacity is needed.
Thrust Bearings with Balls
In this particular type of Thrust Bearings, balls are used to separate both rings that are called washer because of their shape and design. A cage holds ball bearings at right spot between raceways. This type of Thrust Bearings can operate at higher speed. Because of the design limitations, ball Thrust Bearings must be used in pairs to avoid misalignment while mounting. Depending on the application and specific requirements, one washer could be a little smaller than the other one. Usually ball Thrust Bearings are made with two design variations, one with a grove race that makes the movement of bearings frictionless and one without groove race that allow higher axial load capacity.
Thrust Bearings with Rollers
This type of Thrust Bearings is quite similar to ball Thrust Bearings in terms of external design but there is significant difference in their internal structure and applications as well as in properties. Roller Thrust Bearings tend to have high load capacity but they are not high performer as ball Thrust Bearings, although the performance of roller Thrust Bearings could be increased by using special lubrication. Like their counterpart, roller Thrust Bearings also come with two washers, rollers and a cage that holds those rollers. Like ball Thrust Bearings, roller Thrust Bearings also must be used in matching pairs.