Properties and Applications of Ceramic Bearings

July 30, 2020

Most equipment and devices that are being used in heavy industrial activities utilise the abilities of bearings. Bearings are meticulously engineered parts that allow machines to operate effectively and efficiently. They are used to allow the rotation or linear movements of the machine without causing too much friction between two surfaces.

Bearings are intended to move at extremely high speeds. Therefore, manufacturers must pick the right material when fabricating bearings. Some of the most common materials for creating bearings include chrome steel, stainless steel, carbon alloy steel, and plastic. Another material that is being used in manufacturing bearings is ceramic.

Properties of Ceramic Bearings

The number of bearings that are made from ceramic materials is starting to rise as time passes. Most ceramic bearings have hybrid compositions, which are comprised of stainless steel rings and ceramic balls. When compared to other bearing materials, ceramic bearings tend to have higher selling costs.

The expensive cost of ceramic bearings is greatly justified by their overall properties. For starters, ceramic bearings have superior intensity, increased durability, and increased stiffness. Bearings that are made from ceramic are much stronger and harder than steel bearings. They can also operate under harsh and extreme environments since they can resist corrosion and degradation. Electrical erosion and pitting of the rolling elements are also prevented because of the ceramic bearings’ outstanding electrical insulation.

Another great property of ceramic bearings is that they can resist abrasion. The smooth surface of ceramic bearings, alongside their dimensional stability, reduces any risk of getting stuck and jammed, even with little to no lubrication. The lighter weight of ceramic bearings compared to others also allows them to perform optimally without worrying about getting misplaced within the machine. Centrifugal loads that are exerted on the outer race once the bearing spins are reduced tremendously thanks to the weight of ceramic bearings. Given the reduced rolling resistance and reduced weight of ceramic bearings, they can easily gain faster rotational speeds than other kinds of bearings.

Given all these properties, ceramic bearings can last up to 20 times longer than other kinds of bearings.

Applications of Ceramic Bearings

All the properties of ceramic bearing allow them to be utilised and maximised by a lot of industries. Most traction motors of vehicles have ceramic bearings that make them work optimally. Pumps and compressors also utilise the properties of these bearings. Chemical and mixing applications also use ceramic bearings as they can resist harsh chemicals. Moreover, their corrosion resistance allows them to be used for applications that deal with strong acidic or alkaline chemical cleaning solutions. 

Another industry that uses ceramic bearings is the aerospace industry. Satellites, spacecraft, and other aerospace industry products can easily benefit from the lightness of ceramic bearings as they can enhance flight dynamics and acceleration compared to other bearings. Being operational even without any lubricants also makes the ceramic bearings ideal for space-related applications.  Ceramic bearings have excellent properties that make them suitable for certain delicate applications. For ceramic bearing purchases, just give us a call at Global Bearings. We have many years of expertise in the area of sourcing and supplying difficult to identify and locate bearings of all types to the industry as well as competitive pricing of quality bearings through the ZEN Brand.

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