NSK Ltd. announced that it has developed hub unit bearings*1 that employ a new type of grease which helps prevent any significant decline in the service life of the bearings, even when exposed to water. NSK aims to grow sales of the new hub unit bearings in emerging markets, and targets annual sales of 2 billion yen by 2014.
*1 A hub unit is a part that integrates the bearing with the hub on which automobile wheels are mounted. Needless to say, very high reliability is demanded of the hub units designed to hold up the body of the vehicle while ensuring smooth ride.
In the emerging markets of the world, which include the BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India and China) where demand has been rapidly growing in recent years, roadways are often in poor condition, with many still unpaved and subject to flooding during rainy seasons. Hub unit bearings are installed on the part of vehicle closest to the road surface and often operated under severe conditions created by mud and water.
While NSK has continued to improve the performance of its bearing seals, there are still cases where minute volumes of water penetrate the unit under these severe wet and muddy conditions.
NSK has succeeded in developing a water-resistant grease that helps prevent any significant decline in the current service life of bearings, even if they are penetrated by water. The new water-resistant grease ensures longer service life and higher reliability of hub unit bearings.
The new water-resistant grease protects the bearing raceways and rolling elements by neutralizing the effects of any water that finds its way in.
Relationship Between Rolling Fatigue Life and Grease
Overview of Water-Resistant Grease