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Rolling bearings support and guide rotating or oscillating machine elements – such as shafts, axles or wheels – and transfer loads between machine components. They provide high precision and low friction and therefore enable high rotational speeds while reducing noise, heat, energy consumption and wear.

Needle Roller Bearings

Roller bearings — also known as rolling-element bearings — are similar to ball bearings in that they are designed to carry a load while minimizing friction. However, roller bearings transmit loads using cylinder rolling elements, rather than balls, to maintain the separation between moving parts of the bearing. These versatile bearings can contain single or multiple rows of rolling elements; multiple rows can significantly improve radial load capacity. Also, the use of different roller shapes can further reduce friction and support both radial and axial loads.

Roller bearings are used in rotary applications to replace sliding movement with low friction, rolling. Automated roller bearing setting techniques offer many advantages like reduced setting time, assembly cost, and reliable setting. To select the right roller bearing, one must determine the desired bearing life and a sufficient basic dynamic load rating to meet that life requirement. Roller bearings are used in power generation, wind turbines, gear drives, rolling mills, machine tool spindles, gear reduction units, etc.

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Needle roller bearings are the smallest and lightest type of roller bearings. This gives them a slight edge over other bearing types. These bearings have an advantage in applications that require reduced space and weight. The load capacity of this bearing is higher than single row and roller bearings. This bearing can also handle more extensive and stiff operations. They also can roll smoothly in a small cross-section. The drawn cup needle roller bearings are cheaper as compared to refined versions. Needle roller bearings are considered the most economical because it is a full complement of loose needles which are assembled directly into the shaft accommodation. Commonly hardened washers are used for axial location.

Applications of Needle roller bearings:

Needle roller bearings are used in many applications such as vehicle propeller joints, gearboxes, power transmission systems, rocker arm pivots, four-stroke engines, etc. This is specially used in applications where hardened shafts are featured as the outer raceway.

Types of needle roller bearings:

(1) Drawn cup needle roller bearings

This type has a walled outer ring. These bearings are used where the shaft cannot be used as a rolling element for the needle and rollers cage assembly. These bearings need to be mounted with a tight shaft. This makes it more economical and straightforward, as no other ring is required to locate axial loads.

(2) Needle roller bearings with machined rings

These are compact with a high load-carrying capacity and rigidness. This is a carbon chromium bearing produced with or without inner and outer rings.

(3) Alignment needle roller bearing

This needle has a self-aligning ability. These needle roller bearings comprise an outer ring with a convex-shaped outer surface and two seating rings with a concave-shaped inner area.

(4) Combined needle roller bearings

This is a combination of a radial needle roller bearing and thrust bearingThis enables it to accommodate combined radial and axial loads. This also makes it very compact and supports high load-carrying capacity.

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