Parametric Study and Optimization of Starved Thrust Bearings

Heshmat, H., Artiles, A. and Pinkus, O. “Parametric Study and Optimization of Starved Thrust Bearings,” 13th Leeds-Lyon Tribology Symposium, Leeds, U.K., September 1986, Paper IV (ii), (1987) Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Elsevier Publishers B.V. 1987, Session IV, Paper IV.

A parametric study was conducted on the characteristics of thrust bearings with insufficient lubricant supply.  An analysis was performed for tapered land bearings with a flat at the end of the pad equal to 20% of the pad arc, subject to the assumption that the incomplete fluid film starts along a radial line.  Variation in bearing performance was obtained by changing the number of pads, the (R2 – R1)/R2 ratio, and the degree of starvation.  The parametric study yielded an optimized bearing geometry under starved conditions, namely thrust bearings with 12 pads (arcs of 27º) and (R2 – R1)/R2 = 1/2.  The performance of this optimized configuration is tabulated herein for the full range of loadings and levels of starvation.  Results of the parametric study are compared with experimental data showing excellent agreement between the theory and the test results. 

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