Launch of ground-breaking split spherical roller bearings
The new range of SKF Cooper split spherical roller bearings helps customers reduce maintenance downtime, save money and improve worker safety.
Most advances in split bearing technology have been incremental improvements over the last 100 years. However, with the introduction of the SKF Cooper split spherical roller bearing, a new level in product quality and precision engineering has been achieved by combining SKF’s spherical roller bearing and SKF Cooper’s split bearing expertise. Manufactured at SKF Cooper in the UK, the new split bearing range enables customers to significantly reduce downtime by the replacement of solid bearings in-situ.
The SKF Cooper range of split spherical roller bearings is currently available in the 231 series for shaft diameters 240 to 450 mm, which are typically used in mining conveyor and stacker/reclaimer applications. Later in the year, smaller sizes will be introduced, suitable for the quarrying sector.
“Split bearings are ideal for use in the ‘trapped’ bearing position of machines,” says Richard Law, Product Line and Sales Manager for SKF Cooper split bearings at SKF. “By using split bearings it means that, for example, the drive coupling and gearbox do not need to be dismounted during bearing replacement, limiting unwanted costs and downtime.”
The new bearings, which are available in open (unsealed) and sealed versions, offer many advantages, including much shorter mean time to repair (MTTR), as they can be replaced in-situ. They also offer a reduced maintenance burden, reduced production losses from planned and unplanned downtime, and consequently improved worker safety.
The sealed version increases reliability due to improved exclusion of dirt and allows for lower grease consumption, thus reducing the environmental impact. These new bearings also offer a superior shaft fit and run at lower noise and vibration levels.
The excellent performance of SKF Cooper split spherical roller bearings results from several innovative design features including: ductile steel clamped for more secure positioning, and wire-cut inner and outer rings for superior raceway geometry. A precision-manufactured ‘saw tooth’ joint on the outer race of the bearing, boosts axial alignment and allows for a reduced outer ring section.
In mining, the key advantage is that MTTR is typically reduced from 24 hours to 8 hours in conveyor systems. Also, by reducing the number of maintenance steps, such as the overhead lifting of heavy inline equipment, it will also reduce the risks to workers. The new bearings can also be applied in other industries such as mineral processing, cement and metal processing. As the size range widens, applications will expand into other process industries and auxiliary equipment, such as industrial fans.